The exhibition consists of photographs that the artist creates, using plastic models. The artist, who previously combined tri-dimensional computer modeling and photography, considers the relationship between photography and the act of "doing" through the production of object, movement and image. The photographs that depict several vehicles produced throughout the 20th century, which extend the idea of photography as a record of the past, to be a pictorial language that marks the present without any reference to a specific time and space.
The models that the artist employs are metaphors for transportation vehicles that are dysfunctional—disintegrated, defunct and dismantled. The objects that resemble a broken toy or a sculpture are subject to gravity and buoyancy. When isolated within the photograph, the artist describes,
"everything vectoral is balanced; not only the visualization of physical forces but the relationship between horizontal and vertical axes and those as illusionary as perspective. At this point, one should speak of suspended “states” rather than objects.”
The artist clarifies and focuses his position in past works through this exhibition. Instead of handling the object with a rational approach, the artist presents its impossibility; he focuses on the marking of the negative, mute and disembodied images.
Interview with Marcus Graf
You recently opened a solo exhibition called “Statis” in PG Art Gallery, Tophane. Photographing plastic models, what was the first thought came into your mind?
I had already been trying to manipulate photography for many ways. I have been using computer models recently and merging them with photos. I also used plastic figures and toys in some of my past works. In this exhibition i revised my old works deeply and examined the ideas i wanted to show. So i can say this exhibition is kind of simple summary of the past works; taking the important things from them and looking ahead.
What lies down under your space perception and reality in the works shown in Statis?
In this works the idea of space was very important for me because the models that i built are vehicles. They are things made to go somewhere and space is directly related to idea of movement. And I wanted to give them an isolated look to eliminate the signs of space and time. Actually this comes from space perception of our visual culture. Today, space and object informatically fragmented and they usually exist as a collage. I, too, create a kind of collage which includes complex production phases and overlap some units to show the others. I believe not showing the space or showing it as a two dimensional background says a lot about three dimensional perceptions.
How do you use technological tools in your art?
If you’re talking about the electronic technology i only use cameras and computer. Computer is the main tool for me. Not because it allows too many possibilities, but because it gives me the image that I want easily – an image that has a distance, fictional, cold and closed. If you’re asking about technology in general, i can say that learning the limits of the objects in everyday life and building micro- languages with them is one of the main reasons i do art.
How did you choose these vehicles, is there any specific reference?
The models that i used are the copies of the specific vehicles which really existed. Of course the first reason for this to be my choice was to problematize the identity problem. Also, the disfunctionality of the vehicles is related to the same concept: questions about perception of the object as a sculpture, desambling objects or giving qualitative changes in them, etc. Of course if we deal with these issues with models and their photographs, we add new problems into copy-representation-object triangle.
The other reason about the selection of the vehicles is to mention the relation between the photography and the history only based on fictionallty. We believe there is an history which is represented by photogrpahs but actually is not. I intentionally choose the relatively famous and old vehicles. The another interest for me is how, in the last two centuries , the photography and industrial serial production devoloped together while helping each other.
Last but not least they illustrate the collapse of the utopic ideas about the conquest of geography, which belongs the other.
There seems to be a balance but hanging in the air, it is suspicious and illusional. Is this referring to the relationship between objects and status?
Actually the objects are not hanged in the air. We only dont see where they are hunged. The illusion you’re talking about should be the illusion of framing something which comes from photography. This illusion is vital for me and another reason is to show the represantions of the objects, not themselves. In this way illusion saves the images from the interactivty and leaves them in pictorial imaginary space.
How would you describe your intentions that you like to arouse in spectators with enlarging the impact of modified tiny models?
Actually while preparing my works I did not even think about the impact of the image from that point of view. However, one of the purpose was to show how photography is capable of enlarging – but also shrinking – in a way that is also pretty much political in representational history.