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OMER FARUK SIMSEK: AESTHETICS OF THE WEAK
05 - 28/06/2014
You’re face to face
With the man who sold the world
David Bowie-1970*

1.
Power is not necessarily a political party that comes to power in elections. Power cannot solely be limited to state violence. Power is a network of relationships that categorizes individuals, bend them into specific patterns, nationalizes and subjectifies them and imposes a law of truth upon them. Gilles Deleuze likens power network of relationships to a puppeteer’s power. (1) Power, just like a puppet master, exerts power on bodies, bends them up, breaks and knocks them down. Different forms of power ‘weakens’ bodies on all occasions.

Curtain lifted; now what we have before us is ambiguous and acentric power.

2.
Scene Shift; we have a life purged of violence, sorrow, clashes and built upon sedatives and stimulants.

Towards the end of Dostoyevski’s ‘The Brothers Karamazov’, ‘the Devil’ says: ‘I repeat, moderate your expectations, don’t demand of me ‘everything great and noble,’ and you’ll see how well we shall get on.’ The devil of the new world urges the masses to be ignorant by commanding them ‘to be ‘moderate’, ‘not to rebel’ and ‘be normal.’ We see happy individuals who do not rise against exploitative mechanisms as for them being normal means being content.

3.
Time; has scattered individuals about various spaces. Public spaces, sacred spaces, private spaces... Each space depicts a different locality and each locality depicts a different network of relationships. (2) Spaces stipulated by law, spaces convenient to normal behaviour...

In brief; power intensely normalizes individuals by building spaces like homes, schools, churches, mosques, courthouses and shopping malls.

Home as an example; is the name of the space that nationalizes and ‘ordinarizes’ a group of individuals gathered under what we call family. Schools, on the other hand, are divided into small spaces called classrooms where individuals are tamed. Hierarchy is the sovereign power in classrooms.

4.
Curtain drawn for an artist; Jean-Michel Basquiat.
Jean-Michel Basquiat spent a whole life fighting against colonialism. In his unconscious, he bore traces of exclusion and otherization by the white. During his life he rejected being the subject of the white world. He made rejection/refusal into what is artistic. His creation ‘Samo’ persona became the light of back alley of Soho. Basquiat was an artist who ‘broke out of his shell’ with his light and who razed the sterile showcases of the white world to the ground.

İlker Cihan Biner

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*Lines in the epigraph are quoted from David Bowie’s song, ‘The man who sold the world- 1970’ which was covered by Nirvana in 1994.

1) Two Regimes of Madness-Gilles Deleuze Pg.19
2) Of Other Spaces-Michel Foucault “Defter Dergisi” No:4 Pg.10
INSENSITIVE, 2013
VENUS AND THE ASTRONAUT, 2013
ALPHA, 2011
LOSER, 2013
AESTHETICS OF THE WEAK, 2014
COMPLAINS TO NONE, 2013
THE FALL, 2013
ROAD, 2014
BREAKING THE SHELL, 2013
THE ROOM, 2013
CLASS, 2013
THE EXPECTANTS, 2013
EN/ TR