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With his Slat Art editions, Murat German is carving a new artistic path while staying true to his unmistakeable style. This extraordinary, dual-layered technique is the perfect evolution of Germen’s characteristic aesthetic and makes the photograph positively intoxicating. A second layer is split into strips and mounted above the initial photo to create a distinct visual effect that is both exciting and intriguing. The urban jungle in all its diversity unfolds before our eyes. The artist unifies the dimensions of time and space in an exceptional art form that provides entirely new perspectives on the city.
Murat Germen – The Fascination of Cities
The Turkish artist Murat German belongs to the most well-known photographers of his country, and this despite that fact that his defining approach is to use photography as a medium for depicting mistrust. “Photography records the surface information, where one can only depict the exterior features of objects (color, texture, shape, etc.) and the resulting visual representation cannot incorporate the internal condition / content / soul. I also aim to make photos that carry the many traces of time, multiple dimensions of space and finally create photos usually invisible to the naked eye…”
Murat German should perhaps be viewed less as a photographer, and more as a photo artist who uses photography to transcend the genre itself. He is able to do this by digital editing his material on computer. “I tend to concentrate” he explains “on extracting beauty out of ordinary. I attempt to defamiliarize ordinariness, render it ambiguous by alienating it from its familiar context and finally make people to ‘see it afresh…”
The Professor for Art, Photography, and New Media at Sabanci University has long been interested in urban landscapes and architecture, and was actually educated as a town planner and architect. To portray cities as one experiences them, however, is no easy task. A simple shot of a city reveals nothing about the feelings that grip us when we first visit it. The muddle of streets, the diverse architectonic styles, the traces left behind everywhere by previous eras. It seems that Murat Germen has found a way, through photography, to capture the many difference faces of a city. He uses photography not as a means to depict reality, but rather as an artistic form of expression and an instrument through which to explore his environment.
The images in his series “The Many Windows” all have the same format: 60 narrow strips taken from different photographs appear on the left, and flow into a singular photograph on the right. The impression created is one of intense urban thickening; a compression of space. This captures more of the city than would be possible with a single shot. The image appears both foreign and familiar – as a cityscape it is unknown to us, but we recognise the inner emotion of a complex, historically layered space basic photography could never produce. Murat Germen’s compositions emerge from experiments on the computer with vertical strips. The results are fascinating compressions, successful aesthetic translations of urbanity.Bio
1965 Born in Istanbul, Turkey 1983-1987 Technical University of Istanbul, Turkey 1988-1992 Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, USA Lives and works in Istanbul, TurkeyAwards
2007 2nd place & 8 honorable mention awards, International Photography Awards (IPA) 2002 Lawrence B. Anderson Award 1992 Aia Henry Adams Gold MedalGrants
1988 - 1990 Fulbright Scholarship 1990 Aga Khan Summer Travel GrantExhibitions
2012 C.A.M Gallery,The Solo Project, Basel, Switzerland Muta-Morphosis, Rosier Gallery, USA 2011 Muta-Morphosis, C.A.M Gallery, Istanbul, Turkey Muta-Morphosis, ARTITLED! Contemporary Art Gallery, Herpen, Netherlands 2010 Way, Istanbul Modern Photography Gallery, Istanbul, Turkey 2009 Aura, C.A.M Gallery, Istanbul, Turkey 2006 Inside the Arsenal Shipyard, Istanbul, Turkey
2012 Ali’s Koço, Milli Reasurans Art Gallery, Istanbul, Turkey Rosier Gallery, artMRKT San Francisco, USA 2011 Destruction 2011, Istanbul, Turkey Unbounded, Proje 4L - Elgiz Contemporary Art Museum, Istanbul, Turkey La production de l’espace, ALANistanbul Gallery, Istanbul, Turkey Mixology 2011, ARTITLED! Contemporary Art Gallery, Herpen, Netherlands Saint Joseph 140. Year Tribute, Saint Joseph Lycée, Istanbul, Turkey Humankind, NY Photography Festival, Powerhouse Arena, Brooklyn, New York, USA Collective Intimacy, C.A.M Gallery, Istanbul, Turkey 2010 Port Izmir 2, International Contemporary Art Triennial, Izmir, Turkey Chaotic Metamorphosis, Proje 4L - Elgiz Contemporary Art Museum, Istanbul, Turkey Infinite+, CER modern, Ankara, Turkey 2009 Ars Accidentalis, C.A.M Gallery, Istanbul, Turkey Chronophotography, Computational Aesthetics 2009 Art Gallery, Victoria, British Columbia, Canada Becoming Istanbul, Deutsches Architektur Zentrum, Berlin, Germany Becoming Istanbul, al Riwaq Gallery, al Manama, Bahrain 2008 Becoming Istanbul, Deutsches Architekturmuseum, Frankfurt am Main, Germany Ne hal’in varsa gor!, Play Studio Gallery, Istanbul, Turkey Turkish Realities: Positions in Contemporary Photography from Türkei, Fotografie Forum Frankfurt, Frankfurt/Main, Germany Turkish Photography Today, FotoDepartament, St. Petersburg, Russia 2007 Virtual Architecture; Reconstructing Architecture through Photography, SIGGRAPH 2007 Art Gallery, San Diego, USA My Land, My Body, Arcola Theatre London, GB 2006 Caroun Photo Club (CPC) First Annual Photography Exhibition, Teheran, Iran Reading the Space as an Entity, Galleria Vittorio Emanuele, SIGGRAPH 2006 Art Gallery, Boston, USA 2005 Reading the City as an Entity, Istanbul, Turkey