A New Exhibition at Kasa Gallery

Ahmet Kavas takes a critical look at socio-cultural norms in his video “Mom, when will I get married?”  where he takes a subjective view of identity, gender, family, and home. The video in four sequences extends from Weimar, where the artist currently resides, to his family hometown of Denizli, Turkey, chronicling the distance covered through personal stories, confrontations, denial, and acceptance. Kavas’ oil-on-canvas painting “Randevu - The Appointment” depicts the toad, a well-known character in a popular fairy tale, as the hope for returning to one's own reality, and the symbol of emotional and physical reunification. The artist's melange of various techniques on paper, titled "Kuşlar Ötüyorken - While Birds Sing" portrays the implicit and intimate relationships between the family institution, traditions, and apparatuses of social oppression in collages made from the bridal tapestries of the artist's grandmother.

 

Eda Aslan’s “Kelebek Korse”  is a work in collective memory and space, making a delicate endeavor to recreate the traces of the past on slippery surfaces. The installation is based on a "trace" that makes the spatial memory of "Kelebek Korse", a small corset shop that opened in Terkos Pasajı in 1920, moved to a store on İstiklal Street in 1936, and closed down only recently, a part of collective memory. The artist also frames the devastation caused by the events of September 6 and 7, 1955, when the stores, homes and other property owned by the Greek minority of Istanbul were pillaged by Turkish looters. Aslan makes a plaster mold of the piece that is missing from the Kelebek Korse storefront as a result of destruction. She thereby returns the missing piece to its place, linking it up once more with the already-weak memory of the society.

 

Rehan Miskci, whose work on photography and spaces explores the minority identity, loss of belonging, and memory, started developing "Foto Yeraz" - an imaginary and abandoned photography studio - in Beirut to study the connection between the Armenian identity and studio photography. In a room devoid of people, where the only remnants are background pictures and props, the view of a city backed by a mountain is the Bourj Hammoud district of Beirut, which was founded by Cilician Armenians forced to leave their homes in 1915. The background in Foto Yeraz represents the hope for going back home one day, and hints that the hope may not come true after all. “Göründüğü Gibi Değil - Not What It Looks Like” consists of forms borrowed from three studios that were active in Lebanon from the 1940s to the 1970s, and recreates the props used in photography studios in two dimensions, while underscoring the dilemma between photography's promise of realism and the artificial settings created by photography studios. The triptych "Olmadığın Yerler - Where You Aren't" at the entrance of Foto Yeraz came to being when the artist found a studio photograph of her father while looking through the archives of “Maryam Şahinyan - Foto Galatasaray”.

 

 

Şahin Çetin has a multifaceted approach to socio-political memory, city and belonging, geography and space through video, photography, patterns, canvas paintings, and sculptures. The focal point of his work is personal witnesses and the dynamics of social struggle, which expectedly contain political references. His patterns in the series "Provokasyon - Provocation" are the visual and mental manifestations of symbolic codes, intertwined metaphors, and surreal scenes. Beyond the striking and dark nature of humans, animals, nature and places, the uncanny ambiance of the depicted sceneries makes each pattern unique. The exquisite patterns reveal unexpected forms through encounters, integration and opposition in the physical and cognitive world of the artist, sharing a vast and provocative visual resource that springs not from the murky waters of pure reality, but from the bottomless wells of imagination.

 
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