Tiles shine in the dark
KÜTAHYA – Anadolu Agency
“My father was responsible for heating in an apartment. We had economic problems due to his low income. I was shining shoes to make a contribution to my family. I also started working at a tile factory after leaving school. I quickly learned the job. After a while, I also received training from the leading tile masters of Kütahya and worked in various china factories,” he said.
“In 2002, I established my own tile studio. For my first studio, I had to buy a cup of tile paint and a few pieces of tile biscuits. My grandfather gave me 80 Turkish Liras for them and to start working. That night, I could not sleep until the morning as I had opened my own studio,” said Kulkoç.
“I was buying the paint, which I used for tiles, in powder form from a company in Istanbul. I was in the bath when preparing the paint. As the bath was dark, I saw that the paint in my hand was shining in the dark. I called the company and they told me they had made a mistake and sent me luminous paint. They asked me to returned the paint to them but I did not send it back and started working with this paint to see if it could be applied on tile or not. I used one kilogram of paint and continued ordering the same paint. During the work, which took nearly four years, and various formulas, I produced luminous tile paint and started applying it to tiles,” Kulkoç said.
Thanks to this method he had discovered, the artist said his tile artifacts were shining in the dark.
“Since the tile is cooked between 900-1,200 degrees in an oven, it is called ‘flowers blooming in fire.’ With my own method, they now bloom in the dark too. The difference from other tiles is that my tiles are cooked in 400-degree furnaces because the mixtures I use in the paint lose their effect in higher degrees. My tile plates, vases and decanters shine in the dark for about eight hours,” he said.
The artist said he had difficulty in marketing his tiles at first.
“We put examples in a few tile shops and they drew great interest. Then, I increased my production. Our tiles are sold abroad too. We receive great demand especially from Germany, Dubai, the Netherlands, Brazil, Italy and Norway,” he said.