The ‘Crime Scene’ Exhibition by a poet and a performance artist Alev Adil, who is one of our lecturer at the Faculty of Communication, opens on Monday the 17th of June at 19.00 at ARUCAD Art Space in Nicosia.
The scene of the crime is in Müftü Raci Efendi Street. It’s handy for the Police Station, a brief stroll from the gracious yellow stone elegance of the Law Courts, turn right towards Sarayönü. The Crime Scene is in a gallery, ARUCAD Art Space, and thus we can conclude it is a crime committed in the name of art, an art crime. Alev Adil’s multimedia exhibition Crime Scene/ Olay Yeri is a reconstruction of a crime scene, comprised entirely of real and virtual artefacts.
Why are so many people of different ages and cultures all drawn so insistently to the murder mystery? The crime genre has been popular across different cultural contexts around the world, from high to low culture, from occident to orient: crime has fascinated literature, pulp fiction, cinema and television for over a century. Do we dream of solving the puzzle, like the detective, or of restoring order like the policeman? Do we see our own traumas and fears played out in the victim? Or do we fantasise seeking out revenge and transgression, like the criminal? Perhaps we are all of the above: the policeman, the victim, the accused? We choose our role, we play the game… and if it isn’t a game, well then, might it be art? Or life? Are they mutually exclusive?
The installation Crime Scene features a room, or a representation of bare life, a chair and a television. This is the detritus of an amor fati. The television is playing the film Towards the Meaning of Nowhere (Trieste, 2016. 2.54 minutes looped). There seems to have been a murder. There is a stain. Is it a work of art? There is discarded underwear, shoes, there are fragments of a real life, which might serve as clues.
The objects on display in Evidence are mixture of personal detritus that become both mysterious and ritualistic through their juxtaposition and relationship to each other. The installation Interrogating the Object recounts the crime in still images, creating a narrative through an analogue slide show of 80 images, stills from webcams, childhood photographs, images with an eclectic and promiscuous range of cultural allusions from Chris Marker to Disney, Columbo to Robbe Grillet. The audio piece that accompanies the slide show uses poetry and pushes language to create a soundtrack for the crime scene.
Adil’s still digital collages engage with the varying visual vocabulary of different media, ranging from an aesthetics of pixellation and digital breakdown through a mise en abyme of digital surveillance to the postcard, street art and a magical fairy tale mirror. The images are arranged in ditychs and triptychs that allude to different kinds of stories and different ways of telling. The stories they tell are about war crimes, crimes of the heart, mythic and modern crimes.
Crime Scene is as personal as it is conceptual. The artist invites you to interrogate the objects and images gathered here, to read them as autobiography, because they are pieces and moments of her life. Or you can see the installation as an archive, a physical manifestation of the moment of query, of interrogating the artist’s imagined world through the artefacts of its construction. The subject is as fictive as she is real. She is yours to (re)create, and (re)arrange.
Alev Adil is a poet and performance artist, with a PhD in Multimedia Poetics and Expanded Life Writing from Central Saint Martins, University of the Arts. She has performed and exhibited internationally from Finland to Azerbaijan.
The exhibition can be visited at ARUCAD Art Space on Müftü Raci Efendi Street behind Nicosia Saray Hotel between 13.30-17.30 on weekdays and 10.00-13.30 on Saturdays until 1th of July 2019.