Kısmet: New Perspectives on Turkish Visual Culture

The multi-year project Kısmet delves into the diverse and complex facets of Turkish visual culture, seen through the lenses of different generations of image-makers. Artists Olgaç Bozalp, Ece Gökalp and Gülşah Bayrak will show different views of contemporary Turkey through their work. By bringing them together within Kısmet, we aim to present diverse perspectives on Turkish identity and show how identity can be expressed through photography.

Festive opening of two new exhibitions

During this event, we will also celebrate the opening of two new exhibitions by Olgaç Bozalp. The artist will show work at both Galerie Mercatorplein and MAQAM as part of Kısmet. Olgaç Bozalp (born in 1987, Turkey) is a visual artist who takes a fictional approach to documentary photography. His photographic research explores topics related to travel, cultural identity, and migration. By juxtaposing Western and non-Western notions of beauty, masculinity, and femininity, his art promotes a more diversified understanding of these concepts and challenges their traditional roles.

The exhibition Dad on his search for Hüseyin by Olgaç Bozalp is on show at Galerie Mercatorplein from 14 June until 17 July 2023. The exhibition Leaving one for another can be seen at MAQAM from 23 June until 7 October.

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Dad And Omani Friends, November 2018 © Olgaç Bozalp.

Ece Gökalp

Ece Gökalp is a visual artist from Istanbul who primarily works with photography. After completing her studies in photography and video, she moved to Berlin to study Art in Context. Originally from an illustration and drawing background, she has since focused on exploring the possibilities of photography through mixed media works.

The exhibition After Anahit by Ece Gökalp is on show at Foam 3h from 23 June until 3 September 2023.

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Image from the series After Anahit © Ece Gökalp.

Gülşah Ayla Bayrak

Gülşah Ayla Bayrak (born in 1997) is a multidisciplinary artist from Belgium. She studied Visual Arts at Luca School of Arts and pursued an exchange program at the Korea National University of Arts as a Fine Arts student. Bayrak, with roots in Turkey and Georgia, strongly incorporates these influences into her work. She creates connections between the East and the West, aiming to transcend the imaginary borders between the two continents. Her art focuses on individual experiences, cultural diaspora, and society's role in shaping her life.

The exhibition The Start of Something by Gülşah Ayla Bayrak is on show at MAQAM until 13 June 2023.

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The start of something © Gülşah Ayla Bayrak.

The exhibitions 'Dad on his search for Hüseyin' and 'Leaving one for another' are part of Kısmet, a close collaboration between Studio Polat and Foam. Kısmet has been made possible by the generous support of the Mondriaan Fund.

Galerie Mercatorplein is made possible by Stadsdeel Amsterdam-West.

The exhibition is made possible by VandenEnde Foundation and Kleurgamma Fine-Art Photolab.

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Kısmet: New Perspectives on Turkish Visual Culture