WE WON’T LEAVE - Ahmet Öğüt at Parking Gallery VANSA

A satellite artistic intervention for the art and research project “Giving Contours to Shadows”. Curated by Bonaventure Soh Bejeng Ndikung and Elena Agudio. Co-curator Roundtable series: Storm Janse van Rensburg.

Please join us at the opening on Saturday 6 December from 6pm
Ahmet Öğüt will give a talk at 6 for 6.30pm
Parking Gallery VANSA
1st floor King Kong
6 Verwey Street
New Doornfontein

The exhibition will run until 30 January 2015
Opening times: Monday - Friday, 9am - 5pm

(VANSA will be closed from 23 December - 2 January)

The title of the show was inspired by the slogan ‘We Won’t Move!’ ("Ons dak nie, ons phola hier") that was used by Sophiatown residents during the 1955 forced removals, and that was engraved in public memory by the eminent image by Jürgen Schadeberg. The satellite project in Johannesburg resonates with the GCTS exhibition chapter “Sequestrating History”, for which artist Ahmet Öğüt has been reflecting on the act of appropriating or seizing something from the possession of its ‘owner’, on acts of resistance in the urban context and on Henri Lefebvre’s idea of “The right to the city”.

Öğüt’s first solo exhibition project in South Africa will bring together a selection of previous works including the videos “Things We Count” (2008) and “Light Armoured” (2006), as well as a new photo-collage series “We Won’t Leave” informed by the archival pictures. The series of 6 collages depicts people attacked by police dogs during historical protests superimposed upon images of destruction taken by the artist himself in Istanbul, Belgrade, Diyarbakır, São Paulo and Beirut.


More about the project:

The art and research project Giving Contours to Shadows focuses on voiceless shadows and on alternative narrations in which all is said without necessarily uttering words. The reference to Édouard Glissant’s opacity in the title is a poetic allusion to giving forms to historical narratives, but also a wink at the sheer elasticity and fluidity of history: artists and contributors to the project Giving Contours to Shadows do not strive to find words for a history that has been omitted; willingly or unwillingly, they recount the past and history’s trace to the present through works that stand as a voice of the unspoken or the unuttered, and they do not seek to represent “historical facts” but dare to portray an alternative historical narrative and question the dominant canon. As an alternative medium to language, art succeeds in occupying the space between the “factual” and the “nonfactual”. For more information on the project see http://givingcontours.net/

Ahmet Öğüt (born 1981 in Diyarbakır) is a socio-cultural initiator, mediator, artist, negotiator and lecturer, who lives and works in Istanbul, Berlin and Amsterdam. Working across a variety of media, Öğüt's institutional solo exhibitions include Apparatuses of Subversion, Horst-Janssen-Museum, Oldenburg (2014), Blackwood Gallery, University of Toronto (2014), Stacion – Center for Contemporary Art Prishtina (2013), Künstlerhaus Stuttgart, Stuttgart (2012) SALT Beyoglu, Istanbul (2011), The MATRIX Program at the UC Berkeley Art Museum (2010), Künstlerhaus Bremen (2009) and Kunsthalle Basel (2008). He has also participated in numerous group exhibitions, including 8th Shenzhen Sculpture Biennale (2014), Performa 13, The Fifth Biennial of Visual Art Performance, New York (2013), 7th Liverpool Biennial (2012), 12th Istanbul Biennial (2011), Trickster Makes This World, Nam June Paik Art Center (2010), New Museum Triennial, New York (2009) and 5th Berlin Biennial for Contemporary Art, Berlin (2008). Ögüt has completed several residency programs such as Delfina Foundation and Tate Modern (2012), IASPIS, Sweden (2011), Rijksakademie van Beeldende Kunsten in Amsterdam (2007-2008). Has taught at the Dutch Art Institute, Netherlands (2012), Finnish Academy of Fine Arts, Finland (2011, 2013, and 2014), Yildiz Teknik University, Turkey (2004-2006), among others. Ögüt was awarded with the Visible Award for the Silent University (2013), the special prize of the Future Generation Art Prize, Pinchuk Art Centre, Ukraine (2012), De Volkskrant Beeldende Kunst Prijs 2011, Netherlands (2011), and Kunstpreis Europas Zukunft, Museum of Contemporary Art, Germany (2010). He co-represented Turkey at the 53rd Venice Biennale together with Banu Cennetoğlu (2009).

The Parking Gallery is a malleable artist-run project initiated to create an alternative platform for contemporary art in Johannesburg. It is a shared space for discussions and exhibitions. From 2014, the Parking Gallery functions as an ad hoc space. It takes on occasional, significant projects. For more information on Parking Gallery see http://www.parking-gallery.net/


General Information on the art and research project Giving Contours to Shadows

Artists: Mathieu Kleyebe Abonnenc, Jelili Atiku, Fayçal Baghriche, Neïl Beloufa, Halida Boughriet, Márcio Carvalho, Virginia Chihota, Chimurenga, Em’kal Eyongakpa, Mounir Fatmi, Serge Olivier Fokoua, Badr el Hammami / Fadma Kaddouri, Adelita Husni-Bey, Wanuri Kahiu, Bouchra Khalili, Kiluanji Kia Henda, Kapwani Kiwanga, Donna Kukama, Ato Malinda, Mwangi Hutter, Otobong Nkanga, Ahmet Öğüt, Lerato Shadi, Alexandre Singh, Hank Willis Thomas, Emma Wolukau-Wanambwa

Publication: The project will culminate in a publication in German and English (Verlag der Buchhandlung Walther König, Cologne) with contributions by Elena Agudio, Marius Babias, Premesh Lalu, Heike Catherina Mertens, Bonaventure Soh Bejeng Ndikung, Simon Njami, Tavia Nyong’o, Sarah Rifky, and Storm Janse van Rensburg.

Selected partner spaces are:
Kër Thiossane (Dakar, Senegal); Nairobi Arts Trust / Center for Contemporary Art of East Africa and THE NEST (Nairobi, Kenya); 5th Marrakech Biennale Satellite (Marrakech, Morocco);Video Art Network (VAN Lagos, Nigeria); Parking Gallery/Visual Arts Network of South Africa(VANSA, Johannesburg, South Africa).

GIVING CONTOURS TO SHADOWS is a project by SAVVY Contemporary and Neuer Berliner Kunstverein (n.b.k.) 

Funded by the TURN Fund of the German Federal Cultural Foundation and Ernst Schering Foundation



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