I have come across this photo a few weeks ago, while searching for a photograph of the famous public intellectual, poet, ney player, nomad, traveler, and so on: Neyzen Tevfik Kolaylı, who is an influential character in my life.
The trio in this photograph is interesting because each person is from another dimension of existence. The man on the left is Neyzen Tevfik, who is highly satirical about worldly gains and losses, especially the greed for money. The ancient Greek looking man, Rıza Tevfik Bölükbaşı, in the middle is a philosopher, poet, politician and a Bektaşi [a sufi sect] leader, who is not interested in, like Neyzen, in worldly gains and losses, but in actions, events, ideas and such. The man on the right is Nuri Demirağ, who is one of the first entrepreneurs, industrialists and millionaires of the Turkish Republic. Those three together looks like a mere irony, a scene from Beckett plays or Sartre’s stories, a situation that Kafka or Camus would put together. But this photograph, to my surprise, took place in real life. Then I found out that Demirag was a person, who took seriously ideas and thoughts of people like Neyzen Tevfik and Riza Bolukbasi, meeting intellectuals and thinkers on a regular basis and discussing with them about political and historical issues.