Tayfun Serttaş ‘The Other The Other and Beyond’
Tayfun Serttas's performative video "The Other The Other and Beyond" (2005) consists of recordings from almost 30 buildings which used to belong to Istanbul's minorities. The deserted buildings in urban historic centers are no longer functional. Today, these structures are no longer inhabited; their sculptural silhouettes resonate as records of the city's multicultural memory. These buildings were acquired by the city after Istanbul's Greek, Armenian and Jewish populations emigrated. Legal battles continue over the ownership. The 1936 bill prevents minority foundations from owning properties and the Turkish government thus attempted to nationalize some of the properties. The gentrification in city centers has increased the values of these old structures, creating a serious potential for rental income. On the other hand the owners, who are mostly living in diaspora, have regained important legal rights over their old properties. In the midst of this conflict, Tayfun Serttas received special permission to enter these interior spaces. Simultaneously with the video, the artist cooks chicken parts, alluding to Istanbul's culinary culture and families' dinner ceremonies. The artist explains the ritual he has set up amongst historic documents:
"Allegory, as a visual and literary method, is based on the representation of situations, people and objects in different forms through fiction. The main difference between this fiction and other fictions is that it refers to itself in the most indirect way by creating coherence outside the story which it tackles. And in situations where it is impossible for the narration to be direct, allegory steps in as a necessary mechanism rather than an artistic choice."
"The Other The Other and Beyond is a decryption that I dedicate, based on selected details of my personal life history, to all personal life histories. It belongs to the projection of my personal struggle against an opposite allegory of a historical reality that for many years I was permitted to fictionalize only allegorically. "
Artist, writer and researcher Tayfun Serttaş (Born in Turkey, 1982) lives in Istanbul and Bodrum. His installation-focused work is often formed of the multilayered engagement of various media including ready-mades, found objects, sculptures, videos, photographs, artist's books and drawings around a documentary theme. The artist graduated from the Istanbul University Social Anthropology Department in 2004 with a thesis on "Urban Anthropology". He completed his masters at the Yıldız Technical University Art and Design Faculty Interdisciplinary Art program in 2007 with a thesis titled "Photography And Minorities In Istanbul In The Context Of Modernism And Cultural Representation". Since 2000 he has taken part in numerous academic projects, both in Turkey and internationally. Themes he works on include urban anthropology, social gender, the cultural heritage of the other, the critique of civil society, the sociology of everyday life, minorities, urban transformation, sex workers, immigration and change, socio-political strategies and minor politics. Residencies: AIF Residency Program, Arab Image Foundation (2011, Beirut , Lebanon); Accented Residency Program, The Delfina Foundation (2010, London, United Kingdom); Istanbul Artist Residency Program, Platform Garanti Contemporary Art Center (2009, Istanbul, Turkey). In 2011 works of Tayfun Serttaş will be featured among others at the 3rd Thessaloniki Biennial of Contemporary Art, and in the solo exhibition of the artist held by Kalfayan Galleries as part of ReMap3.
Don't miss the show of ‘The Other The Other and Beyond' in Athens, Greece.
Leonidou 11 (2nd Floor), Metaxourgeio, Athens
Nearest metro station: Metaxourgeio (Red line)
T: +30 210 7217679
F: +30 210 7217623