STAGE

SPACE DEBRIS is proud to present the group exhibition “STAGE” curated by Mehmet Kahraman between the dates December 17 2015 to January 17, 2016

Artists: Evrim Kavcar, Başak Kaptan, Evren Erlevent, Mehmet Öğüt, Cemil Batur Gökçeer, Çağla Köseoğulları

Opening Reception: Thursday, December 17, 18:30

Cemil Batur Gokceer, “Untitled”, 2014, lightbox, 27 x 92 cm, courtesy of the artist, The Empire Project and SPACE DEBRIS

Vladimir: What do they say?
Estragon: They are talking about their lives.
Vladimir: To have lived is not enough for them.
Estragon: They have to talk about it.

–Samuel Beckett, Waiting for Godot

Language is apt to obtaining new characters depending on circumstance. The stage of life, make the impartial states of our characters visible depending on the roles we play within the possibilities of the language. The concepts and situations we create wait their turn to leave the stage through the medium of language. Playing, resembles this manipulative side of the language, in the way it creates its own world. In this exhibition Stage, the artists, form their own worlds- the ever changing “stage”s- just like in play and language by utilizing different strategies.

Samuel Beckett’s theatre described as “absurd theatre” by Martin Esslin (especially the long plays such as Waiting for Godot, Happy Days and Endgame) are disjointed from real life when analyzed in parts. When the “meaningless, absurd” words and actions come together, they gain meaning within their existentialist point of view, and regain their value within the system created. It maybe said of the “players” in Stage that they create a surreal reality and a system open-ended for interpretation.

Mehmet Öğüt’s video piece Memories of a Country, focuses on the relation of the present with the past on stage, reminiscing of different stages in a story.

In Cemil Batur Gökçeer’ s photography work, the construct which portrays the performative condition of the figure, becomes a multi –curtain act with figures in search of their identity in Çağla Köseoğulları’s work Untitled.

Evrim Kavcar, Başak Kaptan ve Evren Erlevent’s video and photography installation Odd Friends They Are, portray the search for a improvised language with the environmental elements that is impossible to dialog with, such as stones, grass and rocks.

garipinstall

Evrim KAVCAR, Başak KAPTAN, Evren ERLEVENT , Odd Friends They Are, 2015 Mixed media installation with 30 c-print photographs and 3 channel video, dimensions variable, courtesy of the artists and SPACE DEBRIS

the-memories_part2

Mehmet ÖĞÜT , The Memories Of A Country / Part II, 2015 , two channel synchronized video, one channel sound, 10:45 mins. , courtesy of the artist and SPACE DEBRIS

The Memories of a country  Multichannel Video Installation  / 2015
This Video Installation displays personal vs. collective history, crisscrossing between the two. This project is about the history of a country through the memories of a person. Her name is Mieke A. Swaving. She is a Dutch citizen and seventy-four years old and lives in The Hague, the Netherlands. But she has lived in Istanbul for 15 years until 1979. Then, she moved to The Hague and started working at the Turkish Embassy in The Hague as the Ambassador’s secretary.
Part I of the Video Installation has five digital frames. Ms. Swaving chose five photos of her mother to depict her life. They clearly show her background. She got married in Istanbul, has been working during all her married life, shouldered all the family responsibilities after she divorced her husband. Her life and that of her mother developed in a very different way. Formerly it was forbidden to work for women after they married. The family of her mother was in a good financial situation as her grandfather (her mother’s father) was a well-known architect. She and her sisters and brother had a good education. The same holds good for Ms. Swaving, who grew up in a family with five children. In my video works I choose to have the eyes of Ms. Swaving change places with the eyes of her mother.

SD_MEHMET_OGUT_memories of a country-1

Mehmet ÖĞÜT , The Memories Of A Country / Part I, 2015, Multi -channel video, on loop, courtesy of the artist and SPACE DEBRIS

ARTIST BIOS

Çağla KÖSEOĞULLARI

Born in Istanbul in 1973, Köseoğulları graduated from the Department of Stage and Costume at Mimar Sinan University, Istanbul, in 1998. The artist was presented in the exhibition Pattern / Taksim, at Galatasaray-Bis Wear in 2007, following which she worked with internationally renowned artist Hale Tenger until 2012, assisting on various projects includingLahavle (2007), Strange Fruit (2009) and “Böyle Tanıdıklarım Var III” (I Know People Like This III) exhibited at Arter in 2013. Alongside her work as an art director for feature films and TV commercials, Köseoğulları has also been working as an industrial designer for more than 10 years.

Mehmet ÖĞÜT has a very personal approach to the histories and narratives he explores. A documentary about the translator of the book Turks Fruit in Turkish, for example, is not merely a portrait, but an impression of Dutch and Turkish society. He reflects on the different forms and representations of discourses of power, how these can be analyzed and communicated, but above all, questioned.

Mehmet Ögüt lives and works in Istanbul, Turkey. Since 2013, he studies at Marmara University of Fine Arts Department, Master’s Degree. He did an Erasmus exchange program in Holland at the Royal Academy in Den Hague 2014-2015. He was awarded the ESSL Art Award Cee 2015 in Istanbul. He mainly works with video art. By creating situations and breaking the passivity of the spectator, he likes the viewer to become part of his art as an added component.

Başak Kaptan was born in 1978 in İzmir. She graduated from Bilkent University, Faculty of Fine Arts, Design and Architecture, Department of Fine Arts, and completed her MFA in Graphic Design. In 2003, she received DAAD (German Academic Exchange Service) scholarship and studied at Münster Art Academy and pursued her artistic work in film, video and new media field. In 2004 she received postdiplome scholarship from National School of Fine Arts of Lyon and continued to work and research in contemporary art as a resident artist in ENBAL. She completed her PhD at Marmara University Faculty of Communication.

She participated in many exhibitions, video screening and festivals such as:  Barcelona Loop Art Fair (2012), Nomadic Video Festival (2011),Video Patch Work: Cite the City Within You (2011), Archieve Fever, OPEN FLUX: Videofesta 10. INternational Media Festival (2011),  Mind Models (2010), Video.it (2009), Truths and Mirages/ Contemporary Turkish Video Art (2008), The Mystery of Enchanted Cars (2008). Her first solo show was in 2014, titled as “Perfect Unhappiness” at Videoist in Mardin.

She works as a full time lecturer in İmage Arts department of Fine Arts Faculty at Mardin Artuklu University.

Evren Erlevent was born in 1979 in Ankara. She graduated from Bilkent University, Faculty of Fine Arts, Design and Architecture, Department of Graphic Design, and completed her MFA in the same department in 2004. She has lived in Los Angeles from 2004 to 2013, working in the film industry as a freelance graphic designer and full time art director. During this time she has produced posters for movies and TV, designed animation, opening titles and visual solutions for documentaries and television shows. Upon returning to Turkey in 2013, she started working on her PhD at Gazi University, Institute of Fine Arts, Program in New Media. She has been living in Mardin and working as a full time lecturer, teaching Animation and Basic Design at Artuklu University, since 2014.

 Evrim Kavcar was born in 1976 in Istanbul. Graduated from the sculpture department of Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University in 2000, Kavcar received her MFA from San Francisco Art Institute (2003) on a Fulbright scholarship, and PhD from Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University (2011). She has exhibited at venues such as 28th International Film Festival, Künstlerhaus Bethanien, DEPO, Hafriyat, PiST///Interdisciplinary Project Space, Galeri Zilberman, Daire Sanat, International Sinop Biennial, Sinopale 5, “Clusters and Crystals: Observing at Point Zero” and the 3rd Mardin Biennial.  A full time lecturer at the sculpture department of Mardin Artuklu University, she is also part of an independent team of artists who started a pilot alternative education program at Nesin Art Village.

Cemil Batur Gökçeer was born in Ankara, in 1981. His early photographic works concentrated on storytelling within regard to his long term experiences in conflicted areas in and around Turkey. During these early works (2004-2010) he had the chance to experience the conflict between the subject and its photographic representation, and was able to raise a critical approach against the current trends in documentary photography. This early period has led to his current photographic approach in which the representation of the subject became also a subject matter with its aesthetical and technical formations. During the period that he produced the series “Tangle” different experimentations over the photographic image was performed as reactions against ideas and feelings aroused from the encounters along his journey. This process has also became the basis for his further studies that he took during “Cave Albino”. Darkroom alterations or the flash usage became elements to create a sensation of the critical approach within the photographic form. This critical approach; having parts of an economical and social debate over the subject matters of his projects, was also carrying an intuitional criticism through his acts as a photographer.

Batur has participated in several educational programs such as European Borderlines hosted by ISSP and Reflexions Masterclass with a grant from Turkish Cultural Foundation. In 2012 he was selected to take part in Joop Swart Masterclass of World Press Photo. His works have been exhibitied in several group exhibitions and published in Turkey and abroad. Batur is one of the founders of Torun, and independent art space in Ankara where he had his first solo show “Tangle” in 2012.