“I started painting at a very young age and as an artist I want my own inner-world to be shown and painted on my canvas. To connect with people through beauty and positiveness has always been my greatest desire.
Gigi effortlessly blends different mediums together, transitioning between acrylic and crystal beads to create masterpieces of art. She loves to paint beautiful women who not only have style and class but seem to hold a sacred secret.
Gulgun (Gigi) Turker Fingerhut, currently lives in Minneapolis, MN. She was classically trained in Turkey at Ankara Devlet Konservatuari. Her works have been exhibited at galleries, festivals, and museums internationally, as well as purchased by private collectors. Today, in the popular contemporary arts, she has developed a major following.
One critic noted, “Gigi’s art elicits an immediate emotional response, a moment in time is stopped, a familiar face revealed, the grace and beauty of a body frozen in time. The viewer becomes more than the observer, he/she becomes a participant in the drama unfolding before their eyes.”
Hi, Gigi! Tell us a bit about yourself. When did you begin doing art and how did you get started?
Gigi: I grew up in Adana, Turkey, and then moved to San Francisco to pursue my dream of becoming an artist. Currently, I live in Minneapolis, MN with my husband, Ron. I was very young when I began doing art. I started with sketching nature by looking at trees, flowers, and then people’s eyes and began painting from there.
When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?
Gigi: I wanted to be an artist and a writer.
Tell us about your artwork, medium, style, subject matter etc. And what is the most challenging part of being an artist?
Gigi: I mostly paint mixed-media and 3D paintings on canvas. I use a lot of texture to create depth to the painting and embellish them with crystals — most women love crystals! Early on I had a challenging time finding an art gallery and space to show my artwork due to the high rent and demand but since then social media has taken over and has been very beneficial to my art sales.
What is a day of working like in your studio?
Gigi: First thing in the morning I go to my studio and look at my paintings surrounding me. The vivid colors of my paintings make me very happy as my natural serotonin begins to kick in. I usually spend an average of 5 hours a day painting.
Do you have any rituals that help you get motivated or in “the zone”?
Gigi: I look around each day to get inspired by something before I begin painting.
You say you love to paint beautiful women. Is there a message you are trying to give with your art?
Gigi: Although my childhood was surrounded by much negativity in comments and action against women, something positive came out of all my experiences there. I always had hopes and dreams of being a writer to express my deepest feelings and resentments of my youth, but my ADHD and Dyslexia made it very difficult for me to focus on writing. Painting turned out to be my real talent and I have used that to show and inspire the world how I really feel.
Just like others write in a diary, I put my visions of beautiful women onto a canvas to portray that through our inner visions we all are in our beautiful world and every one of us belongs in this world together to share our freedoms.
Your art is very unique. What’s the most challenging part of your artistic process? And how do you overcome it?
Gigi: The most challenging part of the process is to initially start putting motion into the painting. I overcome this by listening to certain music to relax me and put thoughts in my mind.
How do you see the inspiration for your work growing and changing?
Gigi: I am a very emotional woman who always shows and feels my emotions. Every day when I look around at this world, I get inspired to paint something new to show how I am feeling.
What is the best way to reach people that are interested in your art?
Gigi: Through shows, my website, and social media like Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Linked-In, etc.
Are there any upcoming shows or workshops we should know about (or canceled due to the Covid-19 situation)?
Gigi: Hopkins Center for the Arts, Uptown Art Fair – canceled, Twin Cities Pride Festival (now Virtual).
Do you see your art as serving a purpose beyond art?
Gigi: My images help a lot of people to heal and recover. Art is a healer and therapeutic. It can take our blues away. Art can remind us of the past and the future. Art is love.
What advice would you give to upcoming artists, how to think out-of-the-box, and grow?
Gigi: Never be afraid of showing your feelings on canvas. Be open to criticism, believe in yourself, and give yourself credit for creating the beautiful work you do. Don’t be discouraged, you have to understand that people may have different taste.
What’s next on the horizon for Gigi?
Gigi: I will continue painting and continue to see the beauty in the world. I will continue to connect with my art lovers with Art of Gigi.
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