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International Artist Ahmet Öĝüt Makes Midwest Debut at Laumeier
Ahmet Öğüt, Somebody Else’s Car, 2005, 20 slides, two slide projectors, dimensions variable. Courtesy the artist, Amsterdam. Photo: Ahmet Öğüt.
ST. LOUIS, MO.- Laumeier Sculpture Park presents Amsterdam-based artist Ahmet Öğüt in an exhibition of works from 2005-2010 in his first one-person exhibition in the Midwestern United States. The selection of works represents the range of Öğüt’s interests—from the creation, and destruction, of public space to the subtleties of the urban environment. Underestimated Zones, which opens October 23, will illustrate the breadth and depth of the artist’s exploration of the collective creation of shared space. Laumeier visitors will experience the artist’s sly humor as he probes and pokes at the boundaries of social barriers and cultural norms.

The exhibition will feature still images, video and mixed media as well as a unique installation requiring Laumeier’s tile gallery to be covered in asphalt. The work, Ground Control, was originally installed in Berlin in 2008 and referred to the public perception in Turkey that, before elections, the government “pretties up” roads in order to gain votes. When shown in a white box museum space, however, the work can suggest the power of the material with its lingering smell. In the slide projection piece, Somebody Else’s Car, 2005, the artist transforms two private cars into public vehicles—a police car and a taxi—with magnetic panels resulting in a mixture of social commentary and practical joke.

While offering a clear international perspective, much of Öğüt’s work will be resonant among American viewers given the shifting protections for individual liberties. The work questions our assumptions about security, surveillance, authority and social order with a sense of humor and irony.

“Underestimated Zones is part of Laumeier Sculpture Park’s thirty-three year history of presenting new artists to the community and experimenting with new forms of sculpture,” said Marilu Knode, the exhibition curator and Laumeier’s Executive Director. “This project is part of Laumeier’s expanded exploration of the ‘archaeology of place,’ which encompasses the various forms of social and cultural landscapes that exist in St. Louis and that link us to communities elsewhere.”

Ahmet Öğüt (pronounced “oot”) was born in Diyarbakir, Turkey, in 1981 and works and lives in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. He received his BA in painting from Hacettepe University, Ankara, Turkey, in 2003, his MA from the Art and Design Faculty at Yildiz Teknik University in Istanbul in 2006 and studied at the Rijksakademie van beeldende kunsten, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, from 2007 – 2008. His work has been exhibited around the world including the Venice Biennial in 2009.

Laumeier Sculpture Park | "Ground Control" | Marilu Knode |




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