Commissioned by Alt Art Space, Istanbul
Opening Reception: Wednesday, July 13, 2016, 19:00–21:00
Exhibition Dates: July 13 –October 9, 2016
Opening Hours: Tuesday–Saturdays, 13:00-21:00, Sundays 11:00-19:00
Alt Art Space presents Ahmet Öğüt, Round-the-clock, a major exhibition of mostly newly commissioned works, sculptures, installation and video, that collectively reflect on temporality, injustice and resistance.
Ahmet Öğüt’s While Others Attack (Diğerleri Saldırırken), 2016 installation is made up a series of bronze sculptures. These abstract-figurative sculptures are based on archival photographs of people being attacked by police dogs during historical protests from South Africa’s Cape Town to Alabama’s Birmingham during the Civil Rights Movements. Cast in bronze, associations with public monuments or aristocratic busts suggest perpetual struggle. In early September these sculptures will give way to one of the two channel animation United (Müşterek), 2016, shown simultaneously at 11th Gwangju Biennale, South Korea and Alt art space, and Yama, Marmara Pera Hotel, Turkey, that is an animation about lives lost in protests in both countries.
Another new work, For Six Months (Altı Aylık), 2016 consists of street signs of former art spaces: museums, galleries, foundations, nonprofits or artist-run spaces, mapping what appeared and disappeared in Istanbul’s cultural life and the economic, social and political affects. Öğüt’s work takes on an palpable dimension, given that Alt is a new art space facing the same uncertainty of previous spaces.
A existing work, modified to include paintings from the collection of The Bilge Family, of modern and contemporary Turkish painting, is Bakunin’s Barricade, 2014-2016. Inspired by the Mikhail Bakunin’s never-realized proposal to put works of art in front of the barricade of the socialist insurgency in Dresden against the Prussian troops in 1848, this installation blocks the main exhibition space, conjures self-defense and civil resistance at home. Light Armored, 2006- 2013, is a scale model sculpture of the Mamara Pera Hotel with a video looping in the place of the Yama Screen. The video is short animation that shows an armoured vehicle, towards which tiny stones are being thrown. Another sculpture, Pleasure Places of All Kinds; Shapingba district, Chongqing, 2014, is a scale model of a well known nail house in China, in which public and private space collide into expressions of individual everyday resistance against strategies of state or corporate constraint.
Ahmet Öğüt, 1981, Diyarbakır, Turkey. Selected solo exhibitions: Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven, 2015; Chisenhale Gallery, London, 2015; Delfina Foundation, London, 2012; SALT Beyoğlu, Istanbul, 2011; Stedelijk Museum Bureau, Amsterdam, 2010; and Kunsthalle Basel, 2008. Selected group exhibitions: 11th Gwangju Biennale, 2016; Manifesta 11, Zürich, 2016; Kyiv Biennial, 2015; 13th Biennale de Lyon, 2015; 19th Biennale of Sydney, 2014; Performa 13 and 09, New York, 2013 and 2009; 12th and 9th Istanbul Biennials, 2011 and 2005; 5th Berlin Biennial, 2008, co-represention at the Pavilion of Turkey Pavilion, 53rd Venice Biennale, 2009. He received the 2013 Visible Award, Fondazione Pistoletta & Fondazione Zegna for founding The Silent University. Following his BA from the Fine Arts Faculty at Hacettepe University, Ankara, and MA from Art and Design Faculty at Yıldız Teknik University, Istanbul, Rijksakademie van beeldende kunsten, Amsterdam 2007-2008. He lives in Berlin and Amsterdam.