SAHA provides support for Barış Göktürk's solo exhibition at The Boiler@ELM Foundation held on 1 May – 6June 2021. Using the inspiration of the Boiler, Göktürk produces a large scale work for the exhibition “All Saints” that responds to the monumentality of the space and the fragility of the times we live in.
Gökturk’s work deals with the double-edged potential of collective action in public space of protest that brings individual bodies together against the larger body-politic of state and its institutions. In Gökturk’s work, this power dynamic is explored in a research-based practice of collecting texts, images and anecdotes that are then projected onto the pictorial realm, in form of layered surfaces of image-transfer, paint and relief sculpture.
For his project at the Boiler, Gökturk looks into public dancing as a space of joy, revolt, and acknowledgement of life and death. Dancing in the time of pandemic can be traced back to the Middle Ages. For instance, death dance pictures created during the bubonic plague in Europe feature people from different status and social class dancing hand in hand with skeletons, acknowledging the proximity of life and death. A little later, Brueghel’s depiction of town dances establishes a similar connection between euphoria and madness at times of crisis. The block party, a particularly dear phenomenon in New York can be understood as the modern version with its history of bringing a whole neighborhood together on the street.