Vasiyetimdir: İnci Eviner

It is my will that,

A pit shall be dug up in Olympus for those live and dead losses, who deserved my compassion while they were alive, but did not receive it for one reason or another. Olympus should be built as a reflection in reverse and it should be designed to serve appropriately as a place to settle accounts. (the furniture from courtrooms, 2 disco balls from the studio, 2 pairs of silver shoes would be fine.)

For those who perished before they had formed a conscience, in other words the female and male fetuses who wander in the sewage forever, residency and temporary citizenships should be granted at the Reverse Olympus so that they could sue for the compassion and attention that they are due. If and when they have found the necessary witnesses and evidence, the path to a conscientious settlement will open up to them.

If I am to lose the case in the court fairly set up under the ground at the Reverse Olympus, I, İnci Eviner, promise to perform the heaviest tasks for Orpheus until the end of time and I am willing to dedicate myself fully to work towards returning those who are due compassion back to the earth and to never look back.

It is my will that,

Between 1975 and 1980, we lost my dear painter friends Suna Ceylan Turan and Mine Gözen, who were both from the painting studio of Neşet Günal in the Fine Arts Academy, and painter Deniz Bilgin, with whom I became friends later and who ended her own life. I’d like to entrust them to the artists I have chosen here on Earth.

Painter Suna Ceylan Turan was the most talented painter and poet I ever met. She suffered deeply during a love affair in her last year in school and she slowly destroyed herself by self-erasure in her apartment on Yeşil Bahar street. I entrust Suna to İz Öztat. If İz agrees, Suna would accompany her as long as İz is alive. At every exhibition opening, I wish for Suna to be holding İz’s hand.

Painter Mine Gözen Karaören returned to the studio after the numerous problems she experienced in her lifetime and she died when she had decided to leave her hair and her brush to the wind. I entrust Mine to Şafak Çatalbaş. Mine will be holding her hand during Şafak’s exhibition openings.

Deniz Bilgin,

Who held onto the dreams and fairy tales and who meticulously weaved paintings, left herself from the window of the fourth floor, believing she had wings. I leave to Yasemin Özcan the desk and the leather couch that used to belong to Deniz, now in my studio. I entrust Deniz to Yasemin to accompany her.

İnci Eviner

Translated from Turkish by Merve Ünsal

For the original text, click here

İnci Eviner graduated from the Painting Department of the National Academy of Fine Arts, Istanbul, in 1980 and later obtained her Ph.D. from the Fine Arts Faculty of the Mimar Sinan University. She opened her first solo exhibition in Istanbul in 1986, followed by regular exhibitions in Ankara and in Istanbul. In 1997, her series entitled “Skinless” was displayed at the Venice Biennial. As of 2000, with the consecutive scholarships she won from Rockefeller, ISCP and Leube, she worked in Bellagio, New York and Salzburg. In addition to these cities, her works were viewed also in a solo show at Tokyo. Additionally, she was invited to group show in the major contemporary art centers in the USA, Mexico, Germany, Belgium, Denmark, France and Italy. As of 1998, Eviner is teaching at the Arts and Design Faculty of the Yıldız University and continues working at her studio in Istanbul.

Vasiyetimdir* is a publication project that aims to explore how art works will subsist over long periods of time. Art works live in artist studios, private collections, museums, storage spaces, or simply in memories. But how far do the artists want to control what happens to their works when they are no longer? How do they want to exert their control? We directed these questions to the artists we are in dialogue with. We are accumulating their answers through

*Vasiyetimdir is a Turkish phrase that can roughly be translated into English as “It is my will that…” The phrase holds a tint of the melodramatic, mixed with a sentimental flair.

Vasiyetimdir was conceived by Aslı Çavuşoğlu, Özge Ersoy, and Merve Ünsal.