We had the good fortune of connecting with Asli Sonceley and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Asli, as a parent, what do you feel is the most meaningful thing you’ve done for them?

It’s not so much about the impact that I’m having on my kids, but more about how becoming a mother impacted me. The one thing that I learned as soon as I became pregnant is putting my body first. All my life, I’ve always thought that success requires sacrifice, some sort of drainage of my bodily resources, giving so much of my flesh and bone into the work in order to achieve excellence. But I can see now that this is the exact mentality that is exhausting our Earth’s resources today. Being pregnant taught me: Look, sitting down, and doing the work, when you feel thirsty, get up and drink the water first. The work can wait. The work will turn out better in the end. This simple act of drinking water to me means self-care. It’s also a clear path to better family care, better community care, and better care for the Planet. I hope to sustain this level of care to be a good example for my kids.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
My work is in reaction to climate change and to review my identity as a Turkish American immigrant. I don’t take the world lightly. I wish I could. So I make art or rather life live artfully to sustain my mental health. And this, I have discovered, is tightly connected with environmental health.

Some of my creations come out as visual pieces, like my “Morphic Units” (in photos) which are meditative explorations of my thought patterns and felt emotions. Some pieces are poems, slogans, hand-written letters, private dance parties, unrecorded melodies, neatly folded recyclables, carefully collected non-recyclables, and lately, mandalas out of compostables.

At this stage in my practice, I care less about the outcome, or how my brand is perceived. More about the integrity of my process with my ideologies. This is why a lot of my art is invisible or disappearing because it’s not just me making stuff to look at and for a collector to buy, but it’s me practicing how to become more resilient on a Planet in crisis mode.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
She would be staying with me in Laurel Canyon. We would get Lily’s coffee at the Canyon Store in the morning. She’d have to accompany my whole pack to the Pan Pacific Park for dog walks and people-watching the full Angeleno spectrum. I’d take her to Erewhon as a tourist attraction so she can see for herself the ridiculous price tag on a peeled orange wrapped in plastic. Picnic and a movie at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery. Point Dume, so she can see the ocean is nothing like the Mediterranean. Do LACMA. Do The Broad (take the Metro). Late afternoon walks up to Mulholland. Catch a sunset there, anywhere really, at some point. Salmon and pizza for dinner at Pace’s. Chill at home a lot. Have friends drop by. House party on a Saturday night because I want her to meet everyone.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
A few women in my life aspire me to be a better person, because of how they are able to put family and friends first, make time, and show how they care in the most meaningful and creative ways. Shout out to Angelenas: Funda, Elina, and Aysecan.

Website: www.aslisonceley.com

Instagram: @aslisonceley

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