Videoinstllation by Almagul Menlibayeva und Bahar Behbahani in the show “Aftermath” at Aksanat-Istiklal Caddesi Beyoğlu (14. März bis 28. April 2012)
Five countries are surrounding the Caspian Sea: Russia, Aserbaidschan, Turkmenistan, Kasachstan and Iran.
Almagul Menlibayeva und Bahar Behbahani call the Videoinstallation “Ride the Caspian” (2011). They are projecting fictional pictures of the shores of the Caspian sea on two screens. They are running like a simulated dialogue between the Near East and Central Asia.
Almgul Menlibayeva is an artist from Kasachstans. She studied painting and caught attention with her perfomances. Nowadays she’s working with photos and videos.
The artist is exploring the traditions of her homeland, which is influenced by the sowjet occupation and the spreading modernity of the postsowjet time. Women and her work getting instrumentalized by politics are her main theme. In “Ride the Caspian” she is contrasting the postindustrial landscape of the postsowjet ara with symbols of Kasach Nomads. Kasachs already were comlied by the Russian tsar.
These pictures are corresponding with pictures from Iranian artist Bahar Behbahani. She is showing agriculture and urbanism in the old rooted Perian culture.
Behbehani was born in Tehran in 1973. She witnessed the revolution, eight years of the Iranian Iraqui war and all the contradictions of life.
Unsecurity, supression, hope and extremes are the patterns of her history. In her works Behbehani is dealing with topics like love, identity, femaleness, moral and freedom. They are reflecting the suspense packed relationship between tenderness and violense, cultural rooted brutality and family ideologies.
In “Ride the Caspian” she is connecting the industrial landscape of the Caspian sea with scenes of persian daily life. The family atmosphere is broken by the the surrounding. The drilling island in the background appears like a always present threat. The spectator is left with mixed emotions.
Forgotton realities, false narrations and personal involvements in these items are the focus of “Aftermath”. The exhibition shows works by Adel Abidin, Ayman Yossri Daydban, Ceren Oykut, Constantinos Taliotis, Ipek Duben, Ozgül Ezgin, Rheim Alkadhi, Yane Calovski und Almagul Menlibayeva and Bahar Behbahani.
“State Painting” is part of the exhibition “Istanbul Eindhoven Saltvanabbe”, Salt Beyoğlu, 27.01-06.04.2012
Özlem Günyol and Mustafa Kunt are questioning the models of identities being shaped by passports, borders and other formal categorizing symbols. Airports are simulating the illusion of a global identity, while some individuals are limited by borders all the time. Specially the passport is getting a symbol for mobility or stagnation for its carrier.
In the paperwork collection “state paintings” the artists are using items of passport as figures in their graphic works. The stamps for example are getting a decor, a pattern suddenly. They are purified to a simple abstract figure, freed from their originally limiting functions.
Özlem Günyol and Mustafa Kunt were born in Ankara in 1977 und 1978. They studied at the Sculpture Department of Hacetepe University. Since 2001 Özlem Günyol studied at the Städelschule in Frankfurt. Mustafa Kunt was moving to Hessen in Germany as well. He started studying at the Johannes Gutenberg Universiy in Mainz first and continued at the art academy Städelschule in Frankfurt in 2003.They graduated in 2006 and 2008.
De Technocraat (2003) is a work by the artist community “Atelier van Lieshout” from Rotterdam. It’s exhibited at SALT Beyoğlu as part of the exhibition:
ISTANBUL EINDHOVEN SALTVANABBE ’89, 27.01-06.04.12
The artist community was founded in 1995. It uses all kinds of artistic tools -graphics, conceptual works, walk-in- objects….
the human environment – housing, nutrition, reproduction, movement, cleaning and all kinds of bodyfunctions- are a matter of continous artistic questioning for them
the community Atelier van Lieshout founded its own state in the harbour of Rotterdamm in 2001, they call it AVL-Ville, it has its own currency, a self supplying economical structure, its own constitution, its own flag…. AVL-Ville is an alternative draft to the state authorities with its monopolizing power instruments
the work De Technocraat (2003) is showing a closed circle of feeding, alcoholconsumption and the production of excrements and energy
in this system human beings, called burgher, exist by supplying basic materials to each others; the biogas produced by the excrements of one burgher supplys the other burgher with energy for cooking and for producing alcohol, this basic nutrition keeps burghers going…
the circle is based on four single procedures, which are supplied with instructions in the art work; everyone can learn how to operate this system easily
Atelier von Lieshout doesn’t follow any ideological utopia, it is operated with market strategies, but it pursuits to deliver as much of freedom to the artists as possible