During a six-month residency at Platform Garanti Contemporary Art Center we realized the projects Searching for a Clay Language! Searching for a Clay Language! in collaboration with the artist group Oda Projesi and children from the Galata neighborhood and 20 Minus Minutes at Platform Garanti.
Like our other environments 20 Minus Minutes included and involved visitors’ behavior and participation, as well as the gallery’s immediate surroundings. Located at Istiklal, the citýs busiest pedestrian street, the access to the work was unusually direct for an art centre of this type. Reflecting on the everyday and on current sociopolitical issues, the work was a plastical synthesis of our experience on site and of our ideas on conceiving a porous, inclusive, not-hierarchical, playful and informal space, where inner and outer scapes could meet and where “the familiar” and its order had gone through a process of estrangement. The war on Iraq was starting and the city’s atmosphere was tense, with police and military patrolling the streets.
To emphasise the space´ unstable and open character we asked for the facade’s advertising banners, normally bearing the art centre’s name, title of the show and the artist/s, name/s, not to be used. Resulting in many people entering without knowing that they were entering an art centre and therefore truly wandering through the space trying to find out what it was and how they should or could behave.