Artists' Film International 2019


July 23 – August 18, 2019

Istanbul Modern presents Artists’ Film International, a program featuring videos, animations, and short films by artists from around the world. The focus of this year’s program is “gender”. While sex refers to the natural, biological differences between women and men, gender is the entirety of cultural viewpoints and belief systems in society as well as the status of femininity and masculinity shaped by expectations. Artists’ Film International features reflections of various realities regarding gender as a sociological and cultural phenomenon, and on the invitation of Istanbul Modern, artist Senem Gökçe Oğultekin is a participant in this year’s program. Throughout 2019, Oğultekin’s video titled “Dun (Ev)” will be on show at the Istanbul Modern as well as other international partners of the program.

Established by the Whitechapel Gallery in 2008, Artists’ Film International includes 16 global partner organizations. Every year, each partner organization nominates the current work by an artist from its country. The selection of the films are made around a common theme each year and programmed as screenings according to the curatorial decision of each organization. In the previous years, Istanbul Modern participated in the program with videos by Ali Kazma, İnci Eviner, Ergin Çavuşoğlu, Sefer Memişoğlu, Bengü Karaduman, Burak Delier, Vahap Avşar, Zeyno Pekünlü, Cengiz Tekin and Pelin Kırca.

Artists’ Film International 2019 program: CAROLINA CAYCEDO (Ballroom Marfa, Texas, USA), THERESA TRAORE DAHLBERG (Bonniers Konsthall, Stockholm, Sweden), ATEFA HESARİ (CCAA / The Center for Contemporary Art Afghanistan, Kabul, Afghanistan), LARS LAUMANN (Tromsø Center for Contemporary Art, Tromsø, Norway), JACOPO MILIANI (GAMeC / Bergamo Modern and Contemporary Art Center, Bergamo, Italy), SENEM GÖKÇE OĞULTEKİN (Istanbul Modern, Turkey), MARKO TİRNANİĆ (The Cultural Centre of Belgrade, Belgrade, Serbia), HGUYEN HAI YEN (Hanoi Doclab, Hanoi, Vietnam).


Program / Content: Öykü Özsoy, Deniz Pehlivaner


Guest of 2019:

Senem Gökçe Oğultekin


Dun (Home), 2018



Musical Composition: Aslı Kobaner

Choreography and dance: Gasia Papazyan, Senem Gökçe Oğultekin

Artistic collaboration with Levent Duran


About the video:

Senem Gökçe Oğultekin’s video “Dun (Home)” is set among the ruins of the city of Ani, now located in the province of Kars in eastern Turkey. An important cultural hub in the 10th and 11th centuries, the city’s remains now overlook the Akhurian/ArpaçayRiver which creates a natural border between Turkey and Armenia. Setting this landscape as its backdrop and taking its name from the Armenian word for “home”, the video develops around dynamics such as the body, women, gender, roots, and borders. In the video we see two look-alike women, one from Turkey played by the artist herself, and the other from Armenia. The video displays their encounter, the conflict between them, and the unison they eventually achieve, first through their bodies, and then their souls. Centering on the female body’s connection to her habitat, the video visualizes the symbolization of opposition, which it develops through two individuals who obstinately butt heads, while the narrative woven around the rhythm of difference evolves toward “similarity”.


About the artist:

Born in 1982 in Izmir, Senem Gökçe Oğultekin is a choreographer and performance and video artist. Oğultekin first started dance at the Istanbul State Opera and Ballet, then went to the Institute of Contemporary Dance at the Folkwang University of Arts in Essen, from where she graduated in 2005. The artist has worked with choreographers such as Pina Bausch, Va Wölfl, Meg Stuart, Laurent Chétouane, Mara Tsironi, and many more. Having worked with avantgarde dance companies, Oğultekin has also taken part as a dancer, singer, and performer in various events at theaters such as the Théâtre de la Ville in Paris, the Kaaitheater in Brussels, and Pact Zollverein in Essen. She has participated with her performances in festivals such as the Venice Biennale, Tanzplattform Deutschland, the Kunstenfestivaldesarts, and the Rencontres Chorégraphiques internationales de Seine-Saint Denis. In the videos she has been creating since 2016, Oğultekin has been focusing on body exploration, sound, and improvisation.


Artists’ Film International 2019 Program Partners 

Ballroom Marfa, Marfa, Texas, USA

Belgrade Cultural Centre, Belgrade, Serbia

Bonniers Konsthall, Stockholm, Sweden

CAC, Vilnius, Lithuania

CCAA / Centre for Contemporary Arts Afghanistan, Kabul, Afghanistan

Fundacion PRÓA, Buenos Aires, Argentina

GAMeC / Galleria D’Arte Moderna e Contemporanea, Bergamo, Italy

Hanoi DOCLAB, Hanoi, Vietnam

KWM artcentre, Beijing, China

Museum of Modern Art, Warsaw, Poland

NCCA / National Centre for Contemporary Arts, Moscow, Russia

n.b.k. / Video-Forum of Neuer Berliner Kunstverein, Berlin, Germany

Para Site Art Space, Hong Kong

Project 88, Mumbai, India

Tromsø Kunstforening, Tromsø, Norway

Whitechapel Gallery, London, UK