March 18 – April 21, 2012, The Fire and the Wedding/Agir u Gowend
January 20 – February 5, 2013, Agir u Dawet
Partners: KozaVisual, Artıkişler Collective, DEPO
Venues: DEPO Istanbul, Diyarbakir Amed Gallery
Content: The Fire and the Wedding videos are essentially the visual record of the struggle of Kurdish villagers from Kotranıs in Hakkari to maintain their livelihood and identity after they were displaced and forced to migrate by the state in 1994, settling in the suburban area Türközü in Ankara and earning their living by collecting waste paper at the city center. Over the last decade, as different, darker facets of recycling; for instance that forced migration, discrimination against the Kurdish people is concealed behind the waste we litter on the street without so much as a second glance, became acknowledged, various videos and texts on this issue have been produced. Yet additionally, in the same period, there were also some people from Kotranıs who recorded their own experiences and expressed their testimonies via video themselves. “The Fire and the Wedding” reveals what has been experienced in this country’s capital city’s garbage as the projection of the Kurdish struggle for existence through our shared visual testimony.
Between 2001 and 2011, some academicians, journalists and media artists have written articles about the scavengers from Kotranıs and their conflicts. The book for the video exhibition “The Fire and the Wedding” included those articles about the scavengers. The following article, which has been written by the media artist Ege Berensel as the foreword of this book, deals with the situation of the scavengers from Kotranıs and the aesthetic and political context of the videos in the exhibition “The Fire and the Wedding”.