ALI KAZMA

Obstructions

 

Curated by Emre Baykal

February 18 - April 18, 2009

 

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The first solo exhibition in Greece of Turkish artist Ali Kazma is entitled Obstructions and consists of eight videos from his recent work. 

 

Ali Kazma has been working on the Obstructions series since 2005. This is a modular series, meaning the videos can be shown in different combinations, creating in this way different tensions and readings of the whole. This is the first time that Ali Kazma chooses to exhibit all of them together. In Obstructions the artist is interested in exploring the special relationship that exists between the producer -artist, artisan, factory- and the product and how that process fits into the "bigger" picture of our contemporary society.

 

All eight of them document human activities related to maintenance, repair, production and creation. The Clock Master (2006) documents the repair of a 19th century French clock by the official clock master of the Ottoman Museum of Istanbul while the Brain Surgeon (2006) is a documentation of a brain surgery performed to correct the misfiring neurons on the left side of the brain which is causing the patient significant loss of the right side of her body. The Rolling Mills (2007) documents the making of construction steel in Dilovasi, the industrial heartland of Istanbul and Slaughterhouse (2007) a day in the life of an industrial slaughterhouse in Istanbul. The Studio Ceramist shows a well-known ceramist and designer, as she makes one of her clay works in her studio in Paris while the Household Goods Factory (2008) documents Alessi, a well-known Italian design company, as they produce design products outside Milan. Lastly, Jean Factory (2008) shows the manufacturing of blue jeans, inside the Turkish Mavi - Erak factory in Istanbul.

 

In order to make these videos Ali Kazma goes to the site of production for a brief visit to familiarize himself with the process. When he starts the shooting it is only him and a camera. He has never used assistants, lights etc. as he prefers to work almost as a ghost, so that the process he is trying to capture does not get distorted.

 

Ali Kazma (b. 1971, Istanbul) is a video artist who received his MA degree from the New School in New York City. In 2000 he returned to Istanbul where he still resides. His videos raise fundamental questions about the meaning and significance of human activity and labor and the meanig of economy, production and social organisation. He exhibited his work in Istanbul Biennial (2001 and 2007), Tokyo Opera City (2001), Istanbul Modern (2004 and 2008), 9th Havana Biennial (2006), San Francisco Art Institute (2006), Lyon Biennial (2007), Athens Biennial (2007) and in Whitechapel, London (2008) among others.