Serial Cases_1 Acquaintance

curator: Basak Senova
other participating curators of Serial Cases: Michal Kolecek, Antonia Majaca, Matei Bejenaru, Margarethe Makovec and Anton Lederer, Galia Dimitrova, Eyal Danon, Orfeas Skutelis and Branka Curcic
artists: Stefan Bauer, Erdem Helvacioglu, Osman Bozkurt, Hristina Ivanoska, Sener Ozmen, Erhan Muratoglu, Gülsün Karamustafa, and Banu Cennetoglu
venue: Center for Contemporary Central European Art | Faculty of Art and Design,  J. E. Purkyne University, Usti nad Labem |  Galerija Miroslav Kraljevic, Zagreb |  NOMAD at Istanbul Bilgi Univesity, Istanbul |Vector Gallery, Iasi | The Red House – Centre for Culture and Debate, Sofia |  < rotor > at Forum Stadtpark, Graz |  Israeli Center for Digital Art, Holon |  New Media, Novi Sad
coordinates: Graz, Holon, Iasi, Istanbul, Novi Sad, Prague, Sofia, and Zagreb, 2005-2006

Serial Cases_1 Acquaintance

Serial Cases_1 Acquaintance is a joint project of ten curators from eight countries. The collaboration amongst these curators was started with the MSE (Middle and South-Eastern Europe) meeting organized by < rotor > in Graz during steirisc[:her:] herbst 2004. The idea was shaped by examining ways of collaboration and communication based on mutual experiences shared through art works. Since cultural exchange amongst different geographies can expose similar experiences and parallel histories, critical and significant cases may solely be traced in the course of “specific” art works. Such works evidently inhabit “communicative aspects” and therefore, have the potential to propose alternative channels to any kind of global communication medium for receiving and sharing information. This project aims to detect such works and to construct links between various geographies through exceptional discoveries.

Serial Cases was presented throughout November 2005 – March 2006 as an exchange Video Screening Program in eight different cities. The expansion of the geographical boundaries of the network of the Middle East and South and Eastern Europe covering Turkey has the potential to reveal additional modes of information about the regions. Accordingly, parallel cases along with cultural inputs from these regions were the basis for this screening programme series.

curated by Basak Senova

“Vertigo Entrapped” is a compilation of people, cases, segments, and dreams that are forced to live in parallel realities as modes of survival. The formation of such parallel realities acutely depicts a kind of resistance mechanism towards mental occupation. In this respect, the intensity of the pressure of mental occupation –in every possible layer: political, territorial, spatial, psychological, economical, social– complete the creation of a transitory zone remote from a dominating system, but still dependent on it. The dominating system always signifies and produces pressure, excess, and insecurity –as appearing in globalization; through national legacies; with religion; or even in a realm mapped with the immensity of readings of history.

The enforced transitory zones have set up new orders that sustain a tidal format. The definition of freedom, security, and existence multiply with shifty conditions. While hopes, passions, and dreams are all embodied in these zones, the potential to explode and implode at any time was inscribed to their very existence. As the artefacts of the dominating system, the end is always more brutal and cruel. Nonetheless, these transitory zones constantly demand a sort of courage that blends with unresponsiveness.

Within the flow of “Vertigo Entrapped”, Osman Bozkurt’s work visualizes a transitory dangerous haven (a secretive zone) edging the mechanized and globalized urban reality. “Ohrmong”, by Stefan Bauer and Erdem Helvacioglu, drives us to the close-up realities of a familiar yet uncanny zone trapped in a vicious circle. Hristina Ivanovska’s animation proposes surviving tools for nomads that the governing system has created. “Exit”, by Sener Ozmen, indicates a process of questioning the strength and the stability of the mechanisms of resistance, acceptance and survival during and after inescapable incidents and enforced situations; whereas Erhan Muratoglu’s questionings in “I/O Interface Overbloated” operate on a different layer determined by the mediated reality of daily life. “I/O Interface Overbloated” invites the viewer into an electronic zone that surrounds the solid physical world around us. With “Making of the Wall”, Gulsun Karamustafa captures striking memory extracts, describing sources and grounds for personal resistance. Eventually, Banu Cennetoglu questions the uncertainty of spatial, territorial and mental distances and definitions. The accumulation of the works unavoidably creates a vertigo effect along with the enchanting traps of diverse realities.

Auto-Park: The Highway Parks of Istanbul, 2003
Osman Bozkurt

“Auto-Park” documents unexpected and unorganized actions that penetrate through the dictated imperatives of globalized urban situations. Every single inhabitant of the city is expected to circulate within the territories of the domain defined by the governing system. Inhabitants, living at the outskirts of the wealthy and extravagant zones of the other urbanites, subtlety resist these territorial decisions that are overlapping their factual needs. As the authoritative system design lacks a prediction of a possible defect without developing a counteract, the penetrators could legitimize such transitory zones. In this case, such a zone is defined with the use of strips of greenery between highways as areas of leisure.

Ohrmong, 2005
Stefan Bauer and Erdem Helvacioglu

“Ohrmong” gives a reluctant and disturbing account of a never-ending journey. Amplified actual sounds of this journey operate as the channel for guidance. We are travelling on a train. The sound and instant close-up images are slowly sharpening and drawing the contours of instant realities.   We are still moving forward to complete the journey within the train. We end up with a snow-covered landscape that could be anywhere. This time, the train moves along on the Trans-Siberian railway in Mongolia. Yet, this white limitless setting absorbs many other realities and journeys without a destination.

what’s behind (The Urban Prototypes Project), 2003
Hristina Ivanoska

The animation is an attempt to frame the nomadic imprint of the contemporary refugee. Through many concerns orbiting around surviving, security, freedom, self-sufficiency and life-standards, projected scenes correlate with different modes of survival and existence under the present circumstances of globalization. Gadgets and wearable functional nomadic tools propose new possibilities and mind-sets to create alternative zones for living.

Exit, 2002
Sener Ozmen

Earthquake is a trauma by itself. “Exit” renders a repeating series of exhilarating actions performed by a young man, who dives in and pulls himself out from the ruins of an earthquake site. He is rushing breathlessly to complete his cycle following a decisive pattern. His cycle oscillates on the borderlines of resisting, accepting, struggling, escaping and surviving.

I/O Interface Overbloated, 2005,
Erhan Muratoglu

We are living a transition period. Conventional media has mutated into something which strives to fit in the massive amount of digital data into its limited analogue space. “I/O Interface Overbloated” exposes the bottleneck condition in which new digital data try to flow through the television screen. The struggle between the narrated news and visual data feed creates bizarre conditions and undefined zones for the viewer/data receiver. The conventional TV screen is encapsulated by the new data forcing to find a way to flow.

Making of the Wall, 2003
Gülsün Karamustafa

“Making of the Wall” is a collection of memory extracts of three women who were political prisoners during and after the coup d’etat in 1971 and 1980 in Turkey. Physical and mental walls, which surrounded them, created a detached reality from life. Nevertheless, afterimages of these entrapped lives hint the details of various strong sources and ways for any kind of personal resistance to survive.

Determined Barbara, 2004
Banu Cennetoglu

The narrative consists of “pausing” black and white photographs which follow a route by questioning mental and physical distances. The voyage takes us from Belgrade to Banja Luka which inhabits Serbian refugees. Then the next stop is Glamoc, which brings Barbara. Barbara is a temporary military training ground zone constructed for SFOR units. It is occupying the land of 704 pre-war inhabitants of Glamoc. In 1998 their land was expropriated for its construction and in 2001 pre-war inhabitants were allowed to move back, but Barbara was waiting for them. Barbara itself still signifies an enigma hovering around the definition of “the land” and “the inhabitants” in the course of political conflicts, territorial arrangements and geopolitical debates. Sarajevo adds another dimension to this enigma by disguising itself through uncertainty.

screened at Usti nad Labem – Czech Republic, Zagreb – Croatia, Istanbul – Turkey, Iasi – Romania, Graz – Austria, Sofia – Bulgaria, Holon – Israel, Novi Sad – Serbia and Montenegro, 2005-2006.

Other Screenings