Gentle activism. Belonging to Kurdish minority in Turkey Bucak speaks out in a very subtle and poetic way about issues of borders, displacement and identity . Since activist art is mostly represented by men we used to the straight forward bold and often bloody placard style art. However I find Bucak’s approach very moving. Being a citizen of officially democratic Kazakstan but in fact a dictatorship where any dissident or an activist would face inhumane prosecution, I am in a search of ways of expressing of my concerns. I am inspired by the art of Fatma Bucak, it’s a very feminine memorial that doesn’t strike a spectator as political but raises important issues. Although the gallery manager confirmed that they wouldn’t hold this exhibition in their Istanbul gallery.
Sheila Hicks is now one of my favourite artists I discovered earlier this year at 57th Venice Biennale is now exhibiting in London. Her impressive colourful textile art awakens the tactile childhood memories of home. Besides the wall art, she challenges the medium to create bold sculptural and sometimes architectural objects. Born in USA in 1934, she lives and works in Paris. However her inspiration she draws from Latin American textile tradition.
Handmade textile like felt, wool, silk and plush rugs, blankets, clothes is an inherent part of nomadic culture. I grew up watching and helping my mum weaving, knitting and sewing, even though at work she was an engineer. Any country I move I decorate my new home with some traditional felt wall art. It would be exciting to implement nomadic textile tradition in my art.
Jake & Dinos Chapman are known for iconoclastic sculpture, prints and installations that engage with violence and politics with quite provocative and sarcastic humour. The brothers often use the distance of history to depict the horrifying effects they can have on society, like The Distasters of War in which they disturbingly collage and glitter over famous Fransisco Goya’s etchings that convey the barbarity and futility of war. However this time in dialogue with the reworked etchings Chapman brothers shock the audience with The Disasters of Everyday Life – an everyday horror of terrorism, especially for us, walking through London on a daily basis. Seven very realistic bronze suicide vests in a white gallery space are petrifying and seductive at the same time.
A friend of mine finds an interaction and posting an art-selfie with that kind of artwork somewhat disrespectful. However, as soon as an artwork is offered to the audience it starts living its “own” life, especially in our digital world. I have decided that this selfie is quite a strong way to share my perception and impression of the exhibition. In the way knowing the nature of work of Jake & Dinos Chapman were doing for decades, they probably would be the last to find it offensive.