Starry, Starry Night

Anyone who has driven down into Mersin on Akbelen Boulevard has no doubt seen Van Gogh’s “Starry Night” or Johannes Vermeer’s “Girl with a Pearl Earring” painted onto one of the old buildings along the street.  If like me, you wondered who did these paintings, I can now give you the answer as I recently had a chance to connect with the artist Ertuğrul Çavuşoğlu.

Toroslar 7

Originally from Van, Ertuğrul is a self-taught artist that has been employed by the Toroslar municipality, along with Nazife Bilgin Hazar, to beautify the area and I think they are doing a splendid job, don’t you?

They have completed ten buildings but they are hopeful that their work will continue well into 2018.  They have chosen a range of famous works by Turkish and Arabic artists as well as the European masters mentioned above.

Toroslar 3

Ertuğrul is hoping that his work will inspire younger people into wanting to learn more about the famous paintings that he has replicated and the artists behind the work.  He wants his adopted city to know that art is important.  Art makes you feel and art can take you places you have never imagined.  Art is fundamentally the same all over the world and is a common language which (for me at least) still allows us to all enjoy the work together.

I love this last photo.

Toroslar photos

All photos are courtesy of Milliyet with Ertuğrul’s full approval.

You can follow Ertuğrul’s progress on his Instagram – ertugrul1828 – here.



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How about a colouring book from Amazon so you can make your own masterpieces –


A friend on mine is a great artist and prior to leaving Australia I purchased one of her paintings to hang in my new home here in Mersin.  Her painting is called “Juicy” and I do not think she will mind that I re-post it for my blog today.  You might want to check out her amazing work –


Last weekend was the Mersin Narenciye Festivali  (Citrus Festival) in Mersin.  It seems that Mersin and its surrounding area is well known for its oranges, lemons, grapefruit, apples and any other type of fruit that you can think of.  This is a very popular weekend here in Mersin and what a great way to promote both industry and tourism to the city and yes this really is a festival not some dodgy political meeting like the one I was dragged to a couple of weeks back.

The seafront was full of orange and yellow stalls, flags and balloons.  There were exhibitions, fruit for the tasting, wares to purchase, music to dance to and even a parade.  This Festival had it all including a warm autumn day.  I saw on the internet that it is pouring rain in Sydney yet here we are in November enjoying gorgeous weather.  Nice one.

The Turk has promised me that it will get cold and that I will be whinging “like a bitch” (his words) but right now I will enjoy myself while I can.