Designed as an architectural installation, “We, Elsewhere” is an investigation into the spaces that we create and are created for us as a result of collective displacements and how subjects who find themselves in these spaces react and interact with one another. Reconfigured objects and characters crafted by Eviner evoke the sense of a search for the missing, the erased and that which is elsewhere. The exhibition outlines a space in which subjects hear their own voices in a moment of transition and re-formation somewhere between the unrevisability of their histories and the fragility of the unknown, between optimism and despair. The space uses different levels of aural and visual elements such as drawing, moving image, sculpture, sound and performance, interacting with one another in order to insinuate the workings of a device. The visitors are invited to walk along ramps, courtyards and edges of the space, which displays permeability, allowing views through cuts and cracks in the walls. Together, the characters, the space and the paths tell a story akin to Hannah Arendt’s narrative of struggles in We Refugees.
İnci Eviner explains: “It seems as if some people are in search of their minds, their repressed emotions and gestures, their unfinished stories scattered among the layers of this stage split in half, thinking that only by collecting these they will shape themselves as a subject. As all this happens, I try to both include and exclude myself from these events in order to bear witness. The responsibility of being a witness requires the questioning of being us.” Eviner’s practice, which spans various media to focus on questions of subjectivity, investigates how the individual’s corporeality shapes their psyche and behaviour. She sets up the architectural component in We, Elsewhere like a stage, which acts as a mediator between herself, the viewer and the characters she crafts. In this way, the characters – whose subjectivities are continuously shifting as they attempt to reinvent themselves – are projected onto the viewer. The use of repurposed elements and sections from spaces of confinement, as well as the employment of moving images tracing the outlines of characters in suspense, evokes a sense of transition. When passing through the space, viewers are confronted with their own conditioning and subject position, thereby gaining access to psyches of loss.
We, Elsewhere, 58th International Art Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia, Pavilion of Turkey, Venice, 2019
Installation view from 58th International Art Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia, Pavilion of Turkey, Venice, 2019