Int’l Mardin Biennial opens
The fifth International Mardin Biennial, featuring works by 40 artists from 24 countries, opened in the eastern province of Mardin on May 20 and will host its visitors until June 20.
Hosted by the Mardin Cinema Association, the biennial is organized around the theme of “The Promise of Grass” in a historical building known as the German Headquarters. The biennial, directed by Döne Otyam and Hakan Irmak, is curated by Adwait Singh, an independent curator, theorist and writer living in New Delhi.
Irmak stated that Mardin would host artists in six historical places and public spaces in the city, adding: “We want to create awareness in venues. We want these venues to be restored and brought back to life. We are in the desire of a formation that will be suitable for the whole texture of the historical city, to create awareness and to promote the historical places. We try to impose art on Mardin as much as possible. Our aim is to bring local and foreign artists from abroad together with the people of Mardin.”
Singh explains the concept, saying, “The unstimulated, impregnable nature of the grass is a great metaphor that allows me to express my cosmopolitan concerns. This anarchism of the grass that I believe is healing and its resilience that reproduces itself every time will make me think of the possibility that the wounds of the earth will be covered with a green veil.”
Besides the German Headquarters, the works in the fifth Mardin Biennial will be exhibited in the galleries of Develi Han, Cumbalı Konak, Marangozlar Cafe and the International Design Foundation.
Among the works, an old woman statue of Server Demirtaş can be seen in a room of Develi Han. In the next room, there are women of Selma Gürbüz, which she produced just before she died.
At the German Headquarters, Gülsün Karamustafa’s “Melancholic Şahmaran” welcomes the visitors.
There is also a textile collage of her called “Four Panthers,” “Two Prayer Rugs,” “One Jesus,” “Baby,” “Violinist,” “Stars” and “Tulles.” The works make references to the past of the region.