Curated by Sena Çakırkaya, the exhibition deals with the political and cultural tides impacting today’s world and Turkey, the confusions surrounding identity and sexuality, and patriarchal culture.
With the ironic meaning hidden in the title, "The Last Orientalist" features Yavuz's 10-year creative journey with the ‘Substitutes For My Father’, ‘In the Closet’, ‘Maşallah’ and ‘Curse of the Forever Sultan’ series.
Substitutes For My Father
Based on his own relationship with his father, the artist’s first series ‘Substitutes For My Father’ is comprised of various men with different cultural backgrounds talking about their relationships with their fathers. This portrait installation, which consists of polaroids, gains a sociological aspect due to the diversity of these memories as well as the universal qualities of these relationships.
In the Closet
Yavuz's practice of thinking about defined gender roles continues in his series titled ‘In the Closet’. Through private spaces shared by fellows such as vintage locker rooms of the college teams at USA and Turkish baths, the artist reflects on the similarities and contrasts in male camaraderie between two different geographical locations and societies.
In his ‘Maşallah’ series the artist uses traditional designs and Iznik tiles from iconic monuments from the region, employing a vast archive of decorative Turkish arts as his material to take a stand on the identity definitions of the region. In these photographs, the naked male form that was historically never depicted in Islamic art comes to light under the Iznik tile motifs.
Curse of the Forever Sultan
In his recent works, Yavuz addresses the politically motivated narratives of Ottoman era nostalgia. ‘Curse of the Forever Sultan’ presents a fantastical universe set in an accursed Ottoman Empire. Works from this body of work exist as both digital and hand-made drawings, as well as neon sculptures, and digital animations.
Curated by Sena Çakırkaya, Sarp Kerem Yavuz’s solo exhibition "The Last Orientalist" featuring artist’s brand new works as well as the recent ones, will be on display at Anna Laudel Düsseldorf until 29 May 2021.
For more information, please visit https://annalaudel.gallery/