Focusing on the momentary shifts in memory, the exhibition ‘A Sharp Cliff After a Soft Landing’ questions how certain moments influence the act of art-making. The exhibition displays the methods of expression, when faced with the influence of momentary encounters in our memories.
In its most common usage of the term, memory defines the hidden area where the knowledge of concepts and objects continue to exist with certain codes attributed to them.
This knowledge stems from the transfer of all the meaningful and exemplary acts of the individual to his/her memory. As the certain points in information and knowledge are pluralized within our memories, they transform into indefinable visions, in return.
Memory relies on secondary representations, rather than addressing the ultimate truth or a concrete beginning.
The past is not preserved within memory in its pure and austere form. The act of remembering takes place in the present. Hence, remembrance does not equal to the past. A thin cleavage manifests itself between living the moment and remembrance, which brings the distance between past and present to mind. What makes memory a living form is its intrinsic void. And cultural and artistic creativity flourishes in this void.
Momentary changes are just a part of the sum of an individual’s reactions. These sudden reactions, or in other words, reflexes take place involuntarily in a pace. They are involuntary since they are triggered by the spinal cord, not the brain. Dysfunction of the brain, combined with the individual’s reaction to the unconscious residues of the experiences, is filtered through conscious in order to be defined.
As the cultural rituals cease to exist, thanks to the rise in the urbanisation, momentary situations become the preliminary force behind our reactions. The constant flow of information in social media and other forms of media causes a fluctuation in our memory. As a response to the unsteadiness caused by this fluctuation, a person tends to use the reactions stemming from his/her point of view in order to protect his/her space.
Because of the abundance of information, the codes in our memory only reveal themselves when the need arises. Certain circumstances call for certain reactions, due to the specific nature of these codes.
Is it possible to form a different kind of system for these codes?
Are the shocks, which trigger memory, capable of creating a new type of reaction system or a language?
What kind of a habitat would such a language require? How far could this habitat survive outside the current system? Or would such a shift be even possible?
Or, could we claim the actions taking place in our lives to continue to exist in our memories, given the constant flow of movement in modern life?
How is memory activated, given the artworks are created within a specific period of time and space? Additionally, what sort of expressions would ensue after seeing these works?
How would the shapes and content of the artworks would register in our memories?
Would the fact that contemporary art dwells more on fiction, pose an obstacle before the formation of the memory of the individual?
Would the fact that reactions stem from memories of various occassions require a new definition of the relationship between time and space?
Thus, the exhibition brings the momentary situations in our memory together in the same space. The combination of collective and individual memories is demonstrated on a non-chronological basis. The reactions towards the assymetry pertaining to the flow of time in our contemporary age, are bound to create a new kind of memory in the exhibition space.
-Mehmet Kahraman, Curator