Friday, April 20, 2012

Transparanlık/Transparency: A Silsila Collective Project With SALT

Transparanlık/Transparency is a collective project that investigates the idea of transparency in relation to democracy by weaving together images from past and present media, creating an open archive that was transported through public space. This work of visual art and public performance is both a re-appropriation of and response to the current exhibition, ‘It Was a Time of Conversation’ at SALT Galata in Istanbul.

SALT’s ‘It Was a Time of Conversation’ examines three collaborative exhibitions in Turkey from the 1990s by providing access to the original documents from each of these exhibitions’ archives. With “Transparanlık/Transparency”, Silsila Collective under the direction of Jeffrey Baykal-Rollins, offers a collaborative student response to this exhibition by considering this “open archive” out in the open of public space.

Eighteen students from Robert College created a large transparent banner using imagery from the SALT exhibition, cross-woven with images and text from a wide-range of media coverage of current events. The banner the students constructed mirrors the “Gar Sergi” banner installed in SALT’s exhibition, and was completed at SALT Galata during the last of a series of workshop sessions. Students then carried the banner in silence, from the space of the exhibition back into the public domain.

‘It Was a Time of Conversation’ highlights the emerging role of curatorship these three exhibitions pioneered in the 1990s (‘Memory/Recollection’ was the first curated exhibition ever in Turkey), so too “Transparanlık/Transparency”, draws from a curatorial framework designed here by a student, Leyla Levi, co-curator of this project with Jeffrey Baykal-Rollins.

photos by Özden Şahin