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Even though theology resorts to concepts like death, judgment day, heaven and hell in regard to the eventual fate of humanity and/or the world, the ultimate underlying question is basically existence and/or non-existence. The exhibition "Die letzen Dinge" is a reflection on individual takes on existence and finitude.
Organized by Platform Garanti Contemporary Art Center (Istanbul) for the Westfälischer Kunstverein (Münster, Germany), it features a generation of artists born in Turkey in the 1970s and 1980s, whose visions and dreams deal with the extremes of end-time mood, suicide, and ascension.
Artists group ha za vu zu’s glittering and broken disco ball is an object that has witnessed a sad and violent end. Emre Hüner’s video shown originally in the 10th International Istanbul Biennial depicts an apocalyptical picture around abandoned industrial sites, waste pools and buildings in the center and the periphery of the city. İnci Eviner’s piercing photographs with eerie compositions insistently retrieve lost panoramas, what is secluded and concealed. Eviner’s creatures eluding rational descriptions linger between life and death. In Bashir Borlakov’s photograph, the man, who levitates off the ground holding onto two geese in the vast Caucasus Mountains seems to be re-enacting a local myth about liberation, salvation and ascending to heaven. With a precise and medical stance, Ömer Ali Kazma’s videos stare without a blink, at life and death. In Hale Tenger’s video titled "Beirut," the flitting curtains on the identical windows of a huge building seem to suggest that what is apparent can hide ineffable violence and as the shifts from gloomy to frightening. In one of Leyla Gediz’s paintings included in the show, the artist’s reflection appears on the face of a beautiful young woman who had committed suicide. In her other painting, we gaze at the back of a middle-aged man wearing an overcoat that doesn’t seem to fit well, in an obscure, creepy ambiguity. Amidst these works that trace the very different aspects and limits of our existence, Nevin Aladağ’s "kissing" planes reflects on the poetics of the arrested moment.
Complementing the project in Münster, the Westfälischer Kunstverein will curate an exhibition in Istanbul later this year. A publication will document both chapters. The exhibition is supported in the framework of the series "European Partnerships" by the Kunststiftung NRW and the Goethe-Institut.
Die letzten Dinge
26 January - 23 March 2008
ha za vu zu
Ömer Ali Kazma
Platform Garanti Contemporary Art Center Istanbul