As part of the Komet exhibition series for November, “They Left Without Me!” will be on display between Nov 1, 2011 and Dec 17, 2011 at ALAN Istanbul.
High resolution photographs and video work are brought together as in this installation that takes shape completely depending on the features of the venue itself. The images and videos that are created on a level that corresponds to the artist’s previous work as well as current events invite the audience along with Komet to a counterproductive process of transmission. This creates a common aura of experience that is composed of both the artist’s personal backstory and artistic existence, as well as the cultural, social and political subsconscious that he is a part of.
The relationship between the attractive nature of Komet’s provocative, childish and humorous aura and the condensed features of the multilayered subtext of the exhibition can be better understood over time. “They Left Without Me!” especially offers an opportunity to the younger audience to understand Komet’s unique place in contemporary art.
‘I know no more heart-rending reading than Shakespeare: what must a man have suffered to have such a need of being a Hanswurst!
Friedrich Nietzsche (Ecce Homo)
“Who are you?”
“I–I hardly know, sir, just at present–at least I know who I was when I got up this morning,
but I think I must have been changed several times since then.”
Lewis Carroll (Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland)
The Komet exhibition series present us with the opportunity to develop a better mindset on the multifaceted artistic creations and events that took place in the artist’s life since the 1960s. The exhibition series have a unique mechanism unto themselves, and this displays features in the same vein as the works being exhibited. These mechanisms can be seen differently in all the venues, as they are shapen after the structural, administrational and social features of each venue individually, and on the other hand the relationships between them are further emphasized as they correlate to Komet’s past and present artistic productions. This anti-static setting, (such as fireworks going off simultaneously) in the city with openings that follow each other throughout the month of November is a true celebration of the artist’s situationist attitude, which is a quality inherited from his days in Paris.
The primary aspect of Komet and his art is that it is hard to pin down. Because it is tricky to the mind of the viewer and as you try to understand how his mind works, you also realize that you are walking on thin ice. From canvases to photographs, objects and videos, the artist makes use of different mediums and aims to establish a good relationship between himself and his audience, at times humorous, but always with a stern grip on reality. This is done through himself, or his view, and proves to be inviting on the surface, but deepens in terms of meaning quite rapidly, proving to be an arduous process of interactivity in truth.
But what is the reason for this? At this point we come to terms with the necessity that one has to accept this as part of Komet’s own existence and his artistic stance. Komet materializes this concept by letting this moniker take the place of his own name, which is in fact Gürkan Coşkun. Rather than being a person, Komet is an artistic entity that has become one with himself, immersed within. From that point of view, the creations and the man exhibit more than one form of existence, breaking into pieces and multiplying. It might be more useful to try and understand this through Lacan’s theorems. Lacan dismisses the subject as a person and states that it is impossible for one to be a whole and static subject. The subject has a void by nature and it can only be filled with fantasy. In that sense, the Thing that cannot be voiced through language is in actuality the inpermeable core of the Truth. At this very point, the makings that find a place for themselves within language through symbolism, also become an open expression of the impossibility of the subject itself. This is where the uniquie strategy and genius of Komet come in: “Komet”. This is where the modern individual, having failed to make a static existence replaces this failure with an artistic form of existence that goes beyond this notion of impossibility.
This provocative, humorous and chilish existence is only possible in the privileged space that is given to artists in our modern times. It isn’t hard to fathom the libidinal energy that this performance requires. Komet’s art first and foremost exhibits the social, political and communal background that he has, as well as all the suppressed and silenced sides of his personal experiences, and pays a visit to these concepts again. This of course is rooted in desire. It is this desire that places a 70 year old artist within the firing lines of communal antagonism and inner confrontations of the arts. This position necessitates a dense interactivity between Komet and his audience. And what comes out is true aesthetics in the relational sense.