Art-ist publications is one of the pioneering representatives of the critical movements promoting change in the art scene of Turkey after the 1990s with its publications focusing on criticism, documentation and establishing a memory while at the same time emphasizing the importance of making sense of that which is transient. The Contemporary Art Series of Artist Books appears as a series of books dedicated to this function. The series aim to facilitate an in depth consideration of the differences, originalities and the most remarkable characteristics of the contemporary artists of Turkey. This is why each book of the series is focusing on a single artist. Because the artist book is an ideal form to perceive the work of the artist as a whole and to appreciate the continuities and ruptures inherent in the whole. Therefore, the artist books enable a comprehension of the body of work produced by the artist while at the same time making a collection of these young artist?s works, some of which have never had the chance to be presented in Turkey, available for a wider audience. Being able to view a comprehensive collection of an artist?s work in a single book, reading a collection of evaluations on the artist and witnessing testimonials of the artist in interviews offers a chance to concentrate a total attention.
Art-ist publications started focusing on the works of young artists from Turkey through the artist books series with ?Ahmet Ö?üt: Informal Incidents? in 2008, followed by the second book ?Bashir Borlakov: Fictional Reality? and the third book ?Pigeons are People? was deliberating on Can Altay?s work.
?ener Özmen is a productive key figure who has been actively participating in the contemporary art scene of Turkey since its gradual ascent in the 90s. The original stance of his labour in the emergence of our art is seen in his continuing efforts in writing, publishing, curatorial contributions, presentations and fictional work alongside his art works which mark the centre-periphery polarisation both on a global scale through East-West dynamics and on a local scale through The Southeast-Istanbul axis while at the same time persistently representing the Kurdish (and regional) reality in a multi-dimensional way in contemporary art. Another repeatedly noted characteristic of Özmen is his presence as an experimental figure illustrating the intermingling of text and visual arts. Although Özmen has a critical position in terms of technique as much as content, and has been widely circulated internationally, there has not been a comprehensive publication focusing on his body of work as yet. With this book we had the opportunity to place Özmen?s work of some nearly 20 years into the perspective of a framework.
We hope that, with it, we are able to present a guide to attempt taking on the frequently debated work of ?ener Özmen, who despite relentlessly investigating the periphery in his works, is a central figure in the short history of contemporary art in Turkey. (Sureyyya Evren)
Berlin 2011, 168 Seiten, zahlr. Abb., 21 x 15 cm, broschiert, Englisch/Türkisch