Nancy Atakan was born in the United States in 1946. She graduated from Mary Washington College in 1968 before moving to Istanbul. Since 1969, she has been living in Istanbul. After graduating from Boğaziçi University, she completed her doctoral degree in conceptual art at Mimar Sinan University. She then taught at Boğaziçi University and Robert College. In 2006, Atakan participated in a residency program concentrating on the relationship between image and language at the Banff Art Center in Alberta, Canada. She has published numerous articles and two books: Arayışlar (Istanbul: Yapı Kredi Publications 1998) and Sanatta Alternatif Arayışlar (Izmir: Karakalem Publications, 2008). In coordination with Volkan Aslan and Marcus Graf, Atakan opened a non-profit off space, 5533, in Istanbul in 2008. She has made numerous works using the mediums of digital video, digital printing, and neon. Most of her works analyze the relationship between image and word, but deal with social, gender, or psychological issues.
Atakan has had several solo exhibitions and participated in numerous group exhibitions in Canada, the USA, England, Canada, Egypt, Serbia, Holland, Denmark, Greece, Austria, Argentina, Cuba, and Germany as well as Turkey. Her work was included in the “Cosmopolis 1: First Balkan Biennial”, Thessalonica (2005) and in the “Istanbul Next Wave", Akademie der Kunste, Berlin, Germany (2009). In 2007, one of her installations became a part of the permanent collection of the Bibliotheca Alexandrina in Egypt. Currently, Atakan continues her work in Istanbul.
2009, Pi Artworks, Istanbul.
2007, Proje 4L Elgiz Contemporary Art Museum, Istanbul.
2003, Artoteek Schiedam, (as a part of the “Between the Waterfronts, Istanbul / Rotterdam Cultural Exchange), Rotterdam.
2002, International Longevity Center, New York.
2000, Mary Ogilvie Gallery, Oxford University, Oxford.
Exhibitions with her Video Works:
2009, “Istanbul New Waves”, Akademie der Kunste, Berlin.
2009, “Projected visions 35 years of Turkish video art”, Apollonia, Strasbourg and Ankara Film Festival, Ankara.
2009, “Research Based Social Space”, Kunstverein Langenhagen.
2009, “Off-Space Istanbul”, Kunstraum Kreuzberg / Bethanien, Berlin.
2008, “54th International Short Film Festival Oberhausen”, Oberhausen.
2006, “Coding: Decoding Video Show”, the Museum of Contemporary Art, Nikolaj and Copenhagen Contemporary Art Centre, Copenhagen.
2006, “LA Freewaves 10th New Media Art Festival” the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles.
Reference: Unleashed Contemporary Art from Turkey, (ed. Hossein Amirsadeghi, London: TransGlobe Publishing, 2010), p. 84-85, nancyatakan.com