HomeShoppingHendersonville's Turkish store Artlantic revives founder's artistic vision, legacy

Hendersonville’s Turkish store Artlantic revives founder’s artistic vision, legacy

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HENDERSONVILLE – It’s been three years since the founder of the Turkish shop Artlantic died, but her intricate pieces of pottery and her artistic vision in all her creations are still very much alive as the family keeps her business going.

According to her family, on Dec. 2, 2020, Emine Peker died from the coronavirus. It was a loss the family said it will never fully heal from.

“To cope with the pain of moving forward without her, we are dedicated to upholding her principles and carrying on her legacy. In addition to our ongoing production activities in Kütahya, Turkey, we have expanded by opening showrooms in two different locations in America,” the family wrote in the “About Us” section that will appear on the store’s future website.

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One of those American locations opened July 20 at 317 N. Main St. in Hendersonville. Co-owner Mucifer Peker, Emine Peker’s brother, told the Times-News on Dec. 18 that he’s had nothing but good feelings coming from customers who shop in Artlantic.

“Art is universal … we appreciate being located in Hendersonville. We get emotional by all the tourists and the local people and how they tell us how beautiful our shop is. It is so rewarding,” he said. 

Emine Peker, the founder of the company, embarked on her journey in the world of artistry after graduating from the KKML Painting Department in 1978. She honed her skills as a designer at various Turkish tile art workshops and Turkish tile art cooperatives in Kütahya. In 1985, she established her first store, followed by the establishment of her own workshop the following year.

In recognition of her contributions to the field of Turkish tile art and ceramic art, she was bestowed with the title of State Artist in 2005 and actively represented Turkey in both domestic and international exhibitions.

Mucifer Peker co-owns the store with another one of his sisters, and they are both from Turkey.

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“They both moved to the USA in 2016,” Tim Mollica, who handles marketing for Artlantic, told the Times-News on Dec. 18. “They recently moved to North Carolina this summer. They are in Hendersonville to be the new color and new light downtown on Main Street.”

Mollica said the Pekers do almost all the ceramics at the store and also most of the jewelry.

“They sell handmade glass, mosaics, lamps, textiles and carpets,” he said.

Mollica said he’s noticed the best-selling items so far are jewelry and the ceramic hot pads.

“We actually sell more of the hot pads than anything else,” he said. “This is the largest variety of products presented and the most reasonably-priced Turkish store in the area.”

The Pekers have more plans in the works, including a second shop in the United States, Mollica said.

“They also have another store that they are opening in Sarasota, Florida, in February. They plan to sell unique home furniture as well as clothing in the future,” he said.

Dean Hensley is the news editor for the Hendersonville Times-News. Email him with tips, questions and comments at DHensley@gannett.com. Please help support this kind of local journalism with a subscription to the Hendersonville Times-News.

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