Erdağ Aksel was born in Izmir in 1953. He graduated from the Social Science Institute Dokuz Eylül University in 1985. He got a scholarship and continued his studies at the Creative Arts Center at West Virginia University until 1979. After then he started teaching at West Virginia University, Dokuz Eylül University, San Jose State University in California and Bilkent University. Aksel served as the Chairman of the Department of Graphic Design at Bilkent University. Aksel had his first solo show in the West Virginia University in 1978, followed by various shows in Istanbul, Izmir and Ankara in Turkey; and in London, Gdansk. He has also participated in numerous group exhibitions in Turkey and abroad. Aksel was invited to exhibit his works at the second Istanbul Biennial (1989), the eighth International Small Sculpture Triennial of Budapest (1990), the Italian Pavilion of the forty fifth Venice Biennial (1993) and Arte Fiera Bologna 94 in Italy (1994). Aksel also participated in the groundbreaking "A Cross Section of Avant-garde Turkish Art" exhibition in 1987 and 1998 as well as "Three Modern and Beyond: 1950-2000" at Santral Istanbul (2007-2008). In the 1980s he worked in photorealistic style, creating identical images of consumer goods such as televisions, irons and refrigerators, referring to the deification of mundane objects. From the late 1980s onwards, he created a series of sculptures and installations to critique the nationalism and militarist structure of countries, most importantly Turkey. Aksel currently works at a lecturer at Sabancı University in Istanbul.
Reference: Sotheby’s London Contemporary Art Turkish, 4 March 2009 (London 2009), p. 97 and 98; nesneler.com; sanalmuze.org; x-hall.ada.net.tr