Artist Talk: Not/Seeing The City

21 September

Artist Talks: Oddviz Collective, Serkan Taycan, Alper Şen (Artıkişler Collective)

Curated by Rita Aktay

Room 2 / 3 at SALT Galata, Azapkapı, Bankalar Cd. No:11, 34420 Beyoğlu/İstanbul

21 September 2019, 15.00 – 17.30

NOT / SEEING THE CITY presents a series of talks by three artists/collectives who produce images of Istanbul using the mediums of photography, moving image and photogrammetry.

The diverse ways of seeing that accompany these visual technologies offer a possibility to renegotiate the turbulent transformations of an often hostile urban environment. Can the practical and conceptual tools of image-making; such as framing, recording, reproducing, preserving, montaging and rearranging be used in order to reconfigure our relationship to the metropolis?

Having built interdisciplinary methodologies around this question, Oddviz Collective, Serkan Taycan and Alper Şen will share their thoughts through presentations on their art practices concerning the urban dynamics of Istanbul.

Oddviz Collective virtually reproduce the material memory of Istanbul’s streets using photogrammetry, which enables the 3D realistic modelling of objects based on photographic data. Exploring the new visual and archival possibilities created by this technology, Oddviz detail how they pursue a rigorous documentary practice whilst creating new urban experiences through experimental virtual installations.

Serkan Taycan uses photography to document the rapid urbanisation at the peripheries of Istanbul, yet also expands this into a participatory walking practice in order to facilitate a lived awareness of urban conflicts. Taycan will share his process of creating the four-day walking route ‘Between Two Seas’, established on the occasion of the 13. Istanbul Biennial, which deals with the distances between centre and periphery placing them alongside those of sight and body.

Artıkişler Collective explore possibilities of collective image production through visual research, which they position as an alternative to commonplace documentary making. Collective member Alper Şen will discuss the different visual modalities of three projects, ‘The Surplus of Istanbul’, ‘Istanbul City Hills’ (collaboration with Margherita Moscardini) and ‘Taşkafa’ (with Andrea Luka Zimmerman), asking whether the city is to be approached as a map, a concept, or an emotion.

If, as Walter Benjamin points out in his seminal essay The Work of Art in The Age of Mechanical Reproduction, a different nature reveals itself to the camera than it does to the naked eye, then perhaps the photographic image can be a starting point in constructing different realities from what is already given. Focusing their cameras on urban matters and collecting images, these artists have created interfaces with which to understand, experience and alter the city. 

Oddviz Collective, “Haydarpaşa Historical Guard Post”, 3D Photogrammetric Model, 2017

Oddviz Collective was founded by architect Çağrı Taşkın (1983, Ankara), engineer Sekran Kaptan (1983, Ankara) and artist Erdal Inci (1983, Ankara) in 2016. Documenting urban spaces with photogrammetry, the collective has produced works in Istanbul, Berlin, New York and Venice for their ongoing ‘Inventory’ series. Their first solo exhibit opened at ArtOn in 2018, and they have taken part in international projects such as The Arte Laguna Prize and Plums Audio-Visual Experiments Festival.

Serkan Taycan (1987, Gaziantep) focuses on the dynamics of ecological and urban transformations caused by human activities in his research based art practice. His works have been exhibited at the Venice Architecture Biennale, Istanbul Biennial, Helsinki Biennial of Photography, Mardin Biennial and Sinopale. He has also taken part in exhibitions at SALT, MAXXI, MuCEM, Istanbul Modern and Malmö Museum, and completed residency programs in Cité Internationale des Arts and Delfina Foundation.

Alper Şen (1997, Ankara) completed his studies at ODTÜ University in political sciences and at Ankara University in Radio TV and Cinema. He has since worked with VideoA, Cinema for Peace, Film Collective, KozaVisual, NisiMasa and Karahaber. As part of Artıkişler Collective he currently works with Özge Çelikaslan and Pelin Tan on issues of urban regeneration, migration, social struggles, archives and memory.

Rita Aktay (1997, Istanbul) completed her BA in Fine Art and History of Art at Goldsmiths University and is currently undertaking an MFA in Curating. In her research she focuses on the epistemological, political and affective dimensions of visual technologies. Her recent work includes ‘Here We Are All Moving Images’ as part of DeMo Festival and the artist residencies she curated at Hartslane Studios, London. 

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