Ivy

14/09/2022 - 01/12/2022


Zilberman Gallery is pleased to present “Ivy”, a group exhibition that spans three venues of the gallery in Istanbul. Curated by Başak Şenova, the exhibition features works by Heba Y. Amin, Omar Barquet, Burçak Bingöl, Yane Calovski, Ramesch Daha, Memed Erdener, Didem Erk, Fatoş İrwen, Zeynep Kayan, Azade Köker, Bronwyn Lace, Marcus Neustetter, Cristiana de Marchi, Larry Muñoz, Maarit Mustonen, Egle Oddo, Erkan Özgen, Bochra Taboubi, Cengiz Tekin, Simon Wachsmuth and Verena Miedl-Faißt/Nirual Kenabru.

The conceptual framework of the exhibition started with a passage on “ivy” from a recently discovered manuscript by Alexís O. van Tlön,* which is in the possession of a Vienna-based institution: the Institut für außergewöhnliches Archivwissen Wien. The passage provides detailed information about how the Arabic word for ivy, pronounced as “asheka,” has been transformed into the root of the word “aşk” [love—even excessive and severe love] in Turkish. The reasoning is quite logical and even poetic: “the ivy absorbs the water of the tree it surrounds, withers it, weakens it, and sometimes dries it the way excessive love cuts off the lover's connection to life and exhausts the lover like a faded plant.” van Tlön continues with some lines about how connections and strong ties could have vital importance for survival and how a “plant” can be a resilient symbol for life. Then, the passage enriches this idea with some thoughts on “ruins”. Accordingly, ruins, one of the strongest signifiers of abundance, stabilise the sense of ephemerality and ivy is the only companion that binds life to what was left behind. 

The exhibition follows the enigmatic and paradoxical connotations of “ivy” that branch out into multiple narratives, perspectives, entities, and realities that exist and possess it at the same moment. The works bind these branches together through shared spatial, territorial, and mental temporalities within the three venues, Zilberman Istanbul, Zilberman-Project Space, and Zilberman Selected. Through these links, the venues responsively give cross-references to each other across the city.

*Our knowledge of scholar and artist Alexís O. van Tlön’s life and work stems from a number of fragments we have been lucky enough to unearth in various archives, museums, and repositories distributed in an apparently meaningless pattern across the globe.

Ivy in print
In the span of the exhibition, a publication will accompany the exhibition.

Artists: Heba Y. Amin, Omar Barquet, Burçak Bingöl, Yane Calovski, Memed Erdener, Didem Erk, Fatoş İrwen, Zeynep Kayan, Azade Köker, Erkan Özgen, Cengiz Tekin, and Simon Wachsmuth are represented by the Zilberman Gallery. Ramesch Daha, Bronwyn Lace, Marcus Neustetter, Larry Muñoz, Maarit Mustonen, Egle Oddo, Bochra Taboubi, and Verena Miedl-Faißt/Nirual Kenabru are invited by the gallery.

Maarit Mustonen is generously supported by Frame Contemporary Art Finland and the Saastamoinen Foundation. Bochra Taboubi, and Verena Miedl-Faißt/Nirual Kenabru and Cristiana de Marchi are supported by the Octopus Programme, Vienna.

Başak Şenova is an independent curator and a Visiting Professor at the University of Applied Arts Vienna, running a research-based educational platform "the Octopus Programme" and co-leading (with David Chisholm) the Arts-based Research (PEEK) project Atlas, awarded by FWF Austrian Science Fund (2022-2026).

*Ivy is held within the scope of parallel programs of the 17th Istanbul Biennial.


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