Mom, Am I Barbarian?

October 15th, 2013, 1pm

The 13th Biennial in Istanbul (“Mom, Am I Barbarian?”) at the Istanbul Modern — among many other locations — is barely even an art show. Moreso, it’s just stories, whether told literally (above) or abstractly (experimental video and reconstructed, immersive environments. Entire galleries transformed into schoolrooms or old-fashioned living rooms). It’s selected artists are obsessed with public space and protest. It often reads like a series of pleas: “Please pay attention. Please listen to us.”

There’s a sense that these things come from a generation that, having experienced the glory and rewarding difficulty of collective action for one gorgeous moment, now feel their powerlessness with a painfully heightened acuity.

Walking through the Istanbul Modern and reading a curated selection of stories from Gezi Park, I started crying like a fool. I don’t even know why. Maybe I am envious of the urgency. (“Where is my cause?” etc) Then I remember what’s happening at home, and wonder why the hell I am not there, trying to do something about it.

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Cassie Marketos

Community Manager at Hi. Traveling. Writing! Will send invites generously. Just ping @sayhi.

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