artist / participant

press release

Between November 13th and December 22nd, 2012, Rampa will host Erinç Seymen's exhibition, The Seed and The Bullet. The exhibition is the product of three years' work, primarily with drawing, and it marks the first presentation of the artist's long-term, multi-layered project, Sangoi (2011–12).

The Seed and The Bullet calls into question the naturalization processes of social (dis)advantages, the preservation of social compromises, and/or the transformation of social differentiation-conflicts. Also significant is the way in which The Seed and The Bullet reveals the patient, intense attitude of production that has recently become more prominent in Seymen's work. These recent works propose a new means of communication, directed toward re-organizing today's relationship and perception conditions through a series of symbolic images that are related to and consistent with each other.

In the first section of the exhibition, there are eight independent works. For Surprise Witness 1 (2011) and Surprise Witness 2 (2012), the artist has been inspired by various examples of utopian literature. He demands the viewers to contemplate on the organization of labor in a classless society: Who gets to do the dirty work, and how will relationships of production be structured? These questions are constructed as ominous, fairy-tale-like moments of encounter. Serva ex Machina (2010) tests the boundaries of the visual violence through the viewer's level of perception, employing the motif of submission/colonialism in an intricate composition—a continuation of Seymen's works that oscillate between evoking desensitization and alienation. With Untitled (2011), Seymen cynically deals with the controversy and asymmetry stemming from discrepancies in intentions. Patriot (2009) and Loyalty (2011) trace the permanent impact of devotedness, shared values, and the culture of belonging. The supervisory/authoritarian eyes of institutions that never close follow the viewer in the exhibition space through Daddy (2011) and Untitled (2009).

The second section of the exhibition shows Sangoi, a multimedia work constituted of drawings, video, and installation. Sangoi problematizes the uneven distribution of the roles of winner/loser, ruthlessly shared in today's competitive society. The name of the project is derived from the imaginary country that three young patients of Hans Zulliger—a Swiss psychoanalyst—escaped to, in order to realize various fantasies away from the adult world. Four important elements that determine negotiation abilities and social statuses through individual power mechanisms—class identity, cultural identity, desire and political power tools—trigger four series of 52 iconographic drawings that are transformed into a game that is never concluded. The viewer is invited to enter a cloud of political memory through the wide grouping of symbols that are transformed into game cards that then are utilized in a video. Through this unique perspective, the connection between the rules of the game and the rules of society are scrutinized and called into question.

Erinç Seymen Erinç Seymen (b. 1980, Istanbul) graduated from Mimar Sinan University of Fine Arts, Painting Department, in 2006, and received his MA from Yıldız Teknik University Art and Design Faculty with a thesis about Bob Flanagan.

Seymen participated in conferences and his articles have been published in various magazines on topics such as militarism, nationalism, and gender issues. Since 2002, he has participated in several solo and group exhibitions in Istanbul, Ankara, Vienna, Paris, London, Helsinki, Eindhoven, and Lisbon. The group exhibitions he participated in are: Along the Gates of Urban, K&S Galerie, Berlin (2004); An Atlas of Events, Foundation Calouste Gulbenkian, Lisbon (2007); I Myself am War!, Open Space, Vienna (2008); İstanbul, traversée, Palais des Beaux Arts de Lille, Lille (2009); Moods: A Generation that Goes off the Rails, Ecole Nationale Superieure des Beaux-Arts, Paris (2010).

Erinç Seymen lives and works in Istanbul.

Erinc Seymen
The Seed and The Bullet