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I guess that dreams are always there
Charbel-joseph H. Boutros
Grey Noise, Dubai
May 10–June 30, 2014
In I guess that dreams are always there, Charbel-joseph H. Boutros’s first solo exhibition in the Middle East, the artist engages the viewer in an intangible, conceptual experience. Thoughtfully using simple materials including paper, rubber, tears, sugar, salt among others, Boutros builds a delicate installation, bearing strong performative and melancholic elements. Trained in sculpture, Boutros presents some 12 works, rooted in post-conceptual art and post-minimalism, both in the gallery and office space of Grey Noise. Situating collecting darkness, light, sun and sleep at the heart of his exhibition, Boutros asks for the viewers’ acceptance and faith.
—İpek Ulusoy Akgül
Through the Looking Glass
28 May-17 August 2014
Füsun Onur, an artist whose work is defined by a persistent use of modest materials, recently had a solo exhibition at ARTER, Istanbul. I’d like to highlight the “canvas” works here, which are marked by the artist’s needling, opening up and stitching the surfaces back together. Gold, a color the artist has frequently returned to, is formed into simple, gestural designs, while pale blue dilutes the reverent connotations of the former and the pink echoes with innocence. The canvases share a calculated silence, a self-conscious serenity that is pierced by sprouts of Onur’s very particulate color palette. The crux of this exhibition is the artist’s gentle, playful handling of “things”, emphasizing the experimentation that has defined her self-invention from the very beginning.
Black with White
In Black with White, Cevdet Erek works with scaling different layers and fragments of time and space. He meticulously installs his experience of transiting and transcoding diverse bodies, stories, geographies, works, texts, memories, objects and people that he encountered in different times in Istanbul, Amsterdam, Cairo, Antwerp, Beirut, Pori, and other places. Rather than an indexicality (pointing from here to there) by creating and fixing a single meaning, Erek invites us to witness and discover the richness of diversity within the binary oppositions, Black and White, day and night, light and dark, Laila and Karim, horizontal and vertical… Besides he conjugates different rhythms of a Bendir frame drum, two analog radios and cymbal improvisation from an iPhone with different rulers, which all serve to remind us how we live our everyday life.