Every month, the Forward Magazine brings you a selection of musical gems hand-picked by friends, musicians, speakers of the Forward Festival, and many more. The 31st edition is created by visual artist and illustrator Esra Gülmen. Her talk was one of the highlights of Forward Online Festival Munich this March and she will be back on stage for our very first Forward Festival in Berlin.


Originally from Istanbul, Esra moved to Germany to start her new career as an art director and designer in Frankfurt, and later in Amsterdam. Since then, she has won many international awards, including Cannes Lions, Epica and ADC Germany. Four times in a row, she was selected to be in 200 Best Illustrators Worldwide by Lürzer’s Archive Magazine. She sees her work as a form of self-therapy: She uses art to explore human psychology and showcase the tiny struggles of everyday life.


(c) Esra Gülmen


Enjoy three hours of relaxed hip hop, R&B and the finest rap tunes. Her playlist is a selection of international artists like A$AP Rocky, Mura Masa and The Weeknd, but staying true to her roots, Esra also introduces us to her favorite Turkish rappers like Ezhel, Ceza and Murda.



Find out more about Esra Gülmen’s work and what she’s up to on her Instagram or her website and click here to check out the program of the first-ever Forward Festival in Berlin.