Commissioned for the World Weather Network, a constellation of weather stations located across the world, and with the invitation of SAHA – Supporting Contemporary Art from Turkey, m-est.org is inviting seven artists and writers to publish texts and develop programs, focusing on the weather reporting of their respective locations. The series intends to address the artistic strategies to measure, report, fabulate, and tell stories about the weather, air flows, circulation, and other high to low pressure aspects of our practices and cities. Scheduled for Summer 2022–Summer 2023, this long-year project is supported by the SAHA Art Initiatives Sustainability Fund 2021-22. (Click here for SAHA’s press release of the World Weather Network.)
In this text, Merve discusses the wind as a recurring idea, a traveling sound, a familiar storyteller, an unexpected embrace. The piece sets the tone for the series that delves into ideas in progress and intimate exchanges we rely on to support each other’s practice.
Reading Group by Merve Ünsal
29 July 2022 @ SAHA Studio, Istanbul
A group of current SAHA Studio participants and collaborators read and discussed Walter Benjamin’s One-Way Street, accessed in Turkish from İskender Savaşır’s translation. The event lasted two hours, continuing Merve’s engagement with locality, specificity, and fragmentation in artistic research, which she had articulated in her text for the WWN.
Reading Group by Collective Çukurcuma
24 September 2022 @ SALT Beyoğlu, Istanbul
As part of the screening program Glad We Made It On Time, Collective Çukurcuma and m-est.org hosted a collaborative reading group, moderated by Naz Cuguoğlu, Lara Ögel, and Merve Ünsal. In discussion were Sara Ahmed’s The Promise of Happiness (2010) and Etel Adnan’s The Arab Apocalypse (1989).
This piece functions as a guide that helps us accompany Yasemin’s meandering across text and image-based notes in which materials, surfaces, and spaces are entangled. Yasemin’s positioning as a recorder of her own practice in which the permeable objecthoods of the research processes, the temporal foldings within the quotidian, and the mutual infections of the languages of things and her excitement about relaying the issues that haunt her include these questions that are urgent today: From where could we begin to see, feel, and comprehend the tangible common denominators embedded within the communication of things? Would it be possible to facilitate another language, another form of communication through bringing things side by side?
A translator and editor based between London and Hong Kong, wing introduces a story about the body. The body is adaptive, fragile, and cautious at times: it learns, it breaks, it remembers, it predicts, it warns, it speculates, it whispers. wing draws on knowledge grounded in bodily experience, in relation to her homes and the weather elements that surround them. Unfolding over the past nine months, the piece weaves together three places and moments in time: January when wing wrote a response to our first conversation about weather forecasting in Hong Kong; August when she transferred her text onto a wall, next to a garden of migratory plants in Kassel; and September when she penned the second part of the text in her home in London.
Stay tuned for the upcoming works and events.