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What Story?

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It is supposed that events, facts, and acts are presented to us via words, images, and sounds from a certain perspective, a perspective that basically contains two aspects, namely “physical” and “mental.” The distance of the narrator and listener to the narrated “story” also has those two aspects, whereas the story, with its being, has the ability to form a reproduction of the “real” world. In a narrative, the reality can be replaced by metonymies, similes, and metaphors and fluid nature of reality and the fiction’s universe full of possibilities can contaminate each other. And how about the artistic act, can it be defined as a production of the narrative or the act of narration itself? Can artistic production narrate a story? Can it be eager to incorporate the viewer to the story it narrates? Or, can it go beyond the word and tell visual/iconic stories in which common knowledge, accumulation, shared experience are conveyed?

The exhibition titled “What Story?” to be held at the Kasa Gallery between 25 May – 7 July gathers the visual stories of Hande Varsat, Aras Seddigh, and Meltem Işık constructed around those questions and concepts of identity, body, reality, and fiction.

Hande Varsat, departing from sociocultural experiences and individual contradictions, explores issues of woman’s identity specific to this geography and effects of tradition on social culture. Her photo/installations titled “Cage”, “Unnamed auto-portrait,” and “Leave my dreams to me” elude from the process of interrogating woman’s identity and tradition, giving their way to a rather individual issue: quest of identity. The artist tells the stories of subjectivities that, while trying to hold on to life among different truths, can become unable to see their choices, dreams, inside, outside. Those are stories of efforts to reunite with their selves, narrated with the help of symbols.

Aras Seddigh, in his productions, tackles concepts of timelessness, placelessness, language, and quest of identity, creating “hybrid” figures by combining living and still elements, machine and human. The artist creates stories in which the real and fictional are intertwined, asking questions such as “At which points can reality be constructed? How much can the interchange or interaction between fiction and reality, artificial and natural be felt?” His canvass installation titled “Vigilance I and II” asking those questions, constructs visual stories that the viewer can make sense with references to his/her own memory.

 

The work titled “Once more in the same river” by Meltem Işık, a work that questions how we see and conceive, is organized around the double aspect of the body that sees and is seen; around the impossibility of the human to see him/herself as a whole without the help of external tools. That is a piece of the series of the same title, a photo-installation that is exhibited for the first time, highlighting the close relation of the artist’s creative process to sculpture and performance. Işık, while observing living, breathing bodies as three dimensional works, thinks about her gaze to herself, a body she can never see as a whole. She desperately tries to document bodies by means of photographs to be able to deal with their temporariness. That initiative, while reflecting her relation to her body, presents the viewer a familiar story about shared experiences.