In a press conference on 27 February acclaimed conceptual artist Cevdet Erek announced the concept of ÇIN – his project for Turkey’s Pavilion at the 57th International Art Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia.
At the conference, Cevdet Erek illustrated some methods and concepts that he has experimented with in his series of works since the end of the 2000’s, such as ‘Room of Rhythms’ and ‘Rulers and Rhythms Studies and Sound Ornamentations’ among others, with sounds, images and drawings he made during his presentation.
ÇIN, which is created as a site-specific work for the Pavilion of Turkey at this year’s edition of the Biennale di Venezia, will be developed during the process and be shaped together with the venue. In his presentation, Cevdet Erek gave examples of the studies conducted for the preparation of the work ÇIN, shared through various media.
The artist stated:
“Instead of trying to describe a project that is meant to be experienced on-site, and is still in the phase of formation, I propose to imagine a scene together as an exercise: There is a fenced ruin in the distance with a guard inside of it who should not leave during the day. The guard, while walking in silence, notices a visitor who carefully peeks around and the concert of thousands of crickets thanks to the visitor. This duo, who try to talk to each other at a distance, briefly cry out at the same time from the ear pain caused by a violent noise that occurs out of the blue. Then, at night, in another place as the officer tries to suppress the ringing in her ears by opening the window two fingerbreadths and the noise a notch, enters an alarm sound: ‘viyuviyuviyuviyu’. Then she tries to imagine again in the same order by going back to the beginning.”
Cevdet Erek, who talked about the working process in Istanbul and accompanying short trips, introduced the core project team and stated that the project would allow for new participants and collaborations. The project team includes project coordinator Yelin Bilgin, architect and Gürden Gür, architect, as well as Elif Tunçel, art historian, Ayşe Erek and visual identity designer Yetkin Başarır. A new publication accompanies the exhibition and will be available at the launch of the Pavilion of Turkey at the biennial
The Pavilion of Turkey will be located in the Arsenale at Sale d’Armi where the exhibition takes place. The long-term venue was secured by İKSV for the duration of 20 years from 2014 to 2034 and supported by generous contributions of 21 supporters. The exhibition in the Pavilion of Turkey at La Biennale di Venezia is sponsored by Fiat, and realised with the contribution of Ministry of Culture and Tourism of the Republic of Turkey, under the auspices of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Turkey and the production support of SAHA Association.
During and after studying architecture at Mimar Sinan University of Fine Arts, Cevdet Erek (b. Istanbul, 1974) worked at various architectural practices as well as in the music band Nekropsi. Upon finishing his MA in Sound Engineering & Design at İTÜ MIAM Center for Advanced Studies in Music, he was an artist in residence at Rijksakademie in Amsterdam from 2005-2006. Erek’s installations and performances were shown at dOCUMENTA (13) (2012); Istanbul Biennial (2003, 2013 and 2015), Sydney Biennial (2016), Sharjah Biennial (2013), Stedelijk Museum (2014), MAXXI (2014 and 2015), Istanbul Modern (2014, 2015 and 2016), Arter (2011), SALT (2012 ve 2015) among others. Major solo exhibitions of his work include ‘Alt Üst’ (2014) at Spike Island, Bristol and ‘Week’ at Kunsthalle Basel (2012). Erek published books such as ‘SSS – Shore Scene Soundtrack’ (2008, BAS), ‘Room of Rhythms’ (2012, Walther König) and ‘Less Empty Maybe” (2015, Revolver/Artist). The artist received the Nam June June Paik Media Art Prize given by Kunststiftung NRW in 2012 for ‘SSS – Shore Scene Soundtrack’. His most recent sound/music works include the sound and music direction for Kaan Müjdeci’s feature length film ‘Sivas’ (71st Venice Film Festival – Special Jury Prize, 2014), music and the sound co-design for Emin Alper’s feature length film ‘Frenzy’ (72nd Venice Film Festival – Special Jury Prize, 2015). Since 2011 Cevdet Erek teaches at ITU and lives in Istanbul.