DIDEM ERK


“I wish I could not be Traced in the Archives” | “Arşivlerde İzim Bulunmasın İsterdim” (Sırkıran | Secret Decipherer | Mistiko Spastis)

Performance and video installation, 2013
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2013, 13th ISTANBUL BIENNIAL “Mom, Am I Barbarian?” | “Anne, Ben Barbar mıyım?” ARTER, Istanbul
2015, "Performing Memory" | "Performans Belleği", PLATO SANAT, Istanbul
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Courtesy of the artist
Editing: Didem Erk and Özgür Demirci
Camera: Özgür Demirci
Bufferzone, Apartment Project
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Two channel full HD video (20’03’’, 15’37’’) | color | sound |
the performance book ‘Sırkıran’ by Gürgenç Korkmazel
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Didem Erk asks the questions ‘What are the forms and possibilities of saying? How can letters and texts be acts of making? In a situation of response, someone may be the reader and the other the listener. What are the places and forms for live, confronting and face-to-face experiences in our contemporary way of living?’ Taking these inquiries she has established a manner of working that deals with site responsive installations that explore what constructs our faculties of memory, language and imagination. Considering language as almost a physical place or a door that can open up to all kinds of experience, Erk investigates the space that language is, and what it holds.

Erk’s work exhibited at the 13th Istanbul Biennial, ‘I wish I could not be traced in the archives’ (Sırkıran | Secret Decipherer| Mistiko Spastis) (2013) is an ongoing project she developed during her time in Nicosia, Cyprus. She began viewing the city as a library, and began reading and walking along the North and South parts. Finding the city to be full of stories (much like any other city), and since language is a place, Erk began treating Nicosia as a library of sorts, a container of stories. The records of the artist’s performance, which she did in both Northern and Southern Cyprus, were shown along the north - south axes in the exhibition space as well.

The artist states: ‘It was a project which confronts the city Nicosia with a performative approach of reading and walking along at both parts, North and South... I decided to find a book which is written by a Cypriot writer about his own childhood traumas and intertwined with fiction. I walked and read the book aloud, in both parts of the city. I named myself as an itinerary reader, mobile storyteller to the city about its own past that has been always repressed.’ 1

– Theodor Ringborg

1 Didem Erk, correspondence with the author.



Didem Erk | I wish I could not be Traced in the Archives

 

Didem Erk | I wish I could not be Traced in the Archives

 

Didem Erk | I wish I could not be Traced in the Archives

 

Didem Erk | I wish I could not be Traced in the Archives