Story By: Ajda Ender, Sub-Editor: Marija Stojkoska, Agency: Newsflash
A mechanic who builds life-sized steampunk statues from vehicle spare parts has created a mechanical version of famous Turkish chef Salt Bae.
The statue mimics the celebrity chef’s hair, glasses, and even the way he holds his hands as he sprinkles his trademark salt over his meat creations.
Murat Cetin, 48, who has been working at the Duzce Kucuk Sanayi Sitesi auto repair shop in Turkey for the past two years and has worked with machines his whole life, has been making models from scrap metal since he was a child.
In an interview with Newsflash, he said: “I grew up in the countryside where I used to make my own toys with my older brother. I was always a good artist and would paint a lot as a child.
“I was helping my friend on his car about two years ago. I realised that the vehicle’s old parts could be repurposed. The structures and shapes of some parts inspired me so I tried to make little toys – small motorcycles, small robots, wall clocks.
“It caught the attention of customers who came to our shop and it became a bit of an art exhibition, they would come in with their families just to look and take pictures.”
Over the years, Mr Cetin has started creating more ambitious projects, starting with a large Terminator-style robot complete with gun and ammunition.
He then made a life-sized rocker, inspired by his guitarist friend and neighbour who was feeling lonely on stage.
His latest project, however, was more challenging after he decided to create a well-known person and chose the famous chef Nusret Gokce, who goes by the nickname Salt Bae,
Cetin said: “I was thinking of a sculpture where people could take selfies. Based on ideas of those who came to see the sculptures we made before, we decided to make Salt Bae. We made a metallic sculpture that even repeats Nusret’s famous hand gesture.”
He added: “The reaction has been really good, lots of people want to take pictures and interview us.”
Cetin has no plans to give up his day job, saying: “Of course my priority is my job. But since I was a kid, I love painting and I was very good at it. I imagine the sculptures I want to make as if I was painting them in my head, and then I make these sculptures out of scrap metal.”
He has not yet decided what his next project will be but he is thinking about possibly a soldier or an Ottoman palace guard.
The three sculptures he has already made will remain on exhibition at the garage where he works, and the next model may take a while because he wants to build his own motorbike first.
Cetin said: “I have already started to collect small parts. I will build a nice motorcycle that I can ride around. Since our workload is less in winter, we have more free time.”
He added that building the motorcycle will also mean he gets more spare parts which will allow him to start work on his next statue.
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