Four artists, located in Istanbul and beyond, challenge notions of site specificity and geographical belonging. Curated by first year graduate students at the Center for Curatorial Studies, I’m Not There proposes a crossroads of individuals and absences, the concrete and the ephemeral, “here and elsewhere.” Centered around an intervention by Can Altay in the space of a small conference room, the exhibition features a postcard edition by Yasemin Ozcan Kaya, a sound work by Cevdet Erek, and a screening of videos by Köken Ergun.
ABOUT THE ARTISTS
Can Altay (b. 1975, Ankara, Turkey) received his PhD in Art, Design, and Architecture from Bilkent University (2004), where he also holds an MFA and BFA from, in addition to his degree in Critical Studies from Malmö Art Academy and Lund University, Sweden. His installations of videos, mappings, books and photographs incorporate different forms of research on urban environments. Altay studies improvised architectures in the city, as well as hidden structures of support, unauthorized systems of organization and models of co-habitation. Altay further investigates the production of ideas through “setting a setting” a body of work where he proposes spaces and constructs for gatherings. He has had solo exhibitions in Kunstlerhaus Bethanien, Germany (2008), Sala Rekalde, Spain (2006) and Spike Island, U.K. (2007). His work has been included in the Istanbul Biennial (2003), Havana Biennial (2003), Gwangju Biennial (2008); and in museums and galleries such as the Walker Art Center (USA), VanAbbe Museum (Netherlands), ZKM (Germany), P.S.1 MoMA (USA), and Platform Garanti (Turkey). Can Altay is represented by Arcade, London. www.arcadefinearts.com
Cevdet Erek (b. 1974, Istanbul, Turkey) studied at the Mimar Sinan University of Fine Arts, Istanbul (1992-1999) and is currently pursuing doctoral studies at the MIAM Center for Advanced Studies in Music at Istanbul Technical University. As an artist and musician, Cevdet Erek composes and (re)composes his works as ingredients of grand ideas which are materialized through continuous output processes of intermediary products, in forms of performance, moving image, sounds and installations. He proposes essences of original site-specific situations and subjects, resulting in innately human reflections on time and space. He has had solo exhibitions at 300 m3, Sweden (2009), Lokaal 01, Belgium (2009), and Galerie Akinci, Netherlands (2007). His work has been included in exhibitions such as 8th Istanbul Biennial (2003) and at the Stedelijk Museum, Netherlands (2006), Villa Manin, Italy (2006), Platform Garanti, Turkey (2005), Martin Gropius Bau, Germany (2005), and KUMU, Estonia (2006). He was an artist-in-residence at the Rijksakademie (2005-2006, Amsterdam) and has been awarded the Uriot Prize (2006) and the Garantibank Award (2005). http://cevdeterek.wordpress.com/
Köken Ergun (b. 1976, Istanbul, Turkey) is a video artist living and working in Berlin, Germany. Ergun studied acting at the Istanbul University (1994-1997) and holds postgraduate degree in Classics from King’s College, London (1998-2000) and an MA degree in Visual Communication Design from Bilgi University, Istanbul (2001-2005). After working in theater for the American theatre director Robert Wilson, Ergun became involved with contemporary art. His works, bordering documentary and often centered around issues of national identity, are characterized by a certain double sidedness; Ergun is at once immersed in his subject and an outside observer. Ergun has exhibited internationally at institutions such as Platform Garanti (Istanbul), KIASMA Museum of Contemporary Arts (Helsinki), Sparwasser HQ (Berlin), Museum of Contemporary Arts Taipei, Art in General (New York), Digital ArtLab (Tel Aviv), and Stedelijk Meseum Bureau (Amsterdam). His video works have also screened extensively, including the Oberhausen, Rotterdam, Sydney and Zagreb Film Festivals. Ergun is the 2007 recipient of the Tiger Award of the Rotterdam Film Festival for his short film The Flag. He is currently writing his PhD at the Istanbul University and Freie Universität Berlin. Web site: www.indexofworks.com
Yasemin Özcan Kaya (b. 1974, Istanbul, Turkey) A graduate of the Ceramics Department of Mimar Sinan University (1997), Özcan Kaya draws on a variety of media. Her recent works predominantly consist of photographic and video installations. Özcan Kaya focuses on the intersection of art and politics, civil society, cultural policy/politics, as well as social, cultural and gender identities. From 2005 to 2007 she participated in the artist exchange programme Transfer (North-Rhine Westphalia, Germany) and in 2009 she participated in the Can Xalant Artist exchange programme in Mataro (Spain). Her recent exhibitions include: 2009 “threehundredone” Apartman Projesi/İstanbul, 2009 “Unjust Provocation” Hafriyat Karaköy/İstanbul-TR, 2008 “accumulated” 5533 i.M.Ç./İstanbul-TR, 2008 “save as” Triennale Bovisa/Milano-IT, 2007 “transfer” santralistanbul-Bilgi University/İstanbul-TR, 2007 “video-ist” İstanbul Modern Cinema/İstanbul-TR, 2007 “transfer” Ludwig Forum Museum/Aachen-GER, 2007 “transfer” Bochum Museum/Bochum-GER, 2007 “transfer” Austellung Münster/Münster-GER, 2006 “Meltem of Istanbul” Proje 4L/İstanbul-TR, 2006 “tr-answer” Jülicher Strasse/Aachen-GER. For further information: www.yaseminozcankaya.com