Julie Upmeyer was make a live-streamed performative tour titled ‘A Conversation with Sinop, 119,680 Hours Removed’, where the photographs she took in Sinop in 2008 are mixed with her current life in North Wales. Then, a conversation took place between the artist and the curator Rana Öztürk.
I. A Conversation
An invitation to reconnect.
Past lives, distant places, previous projects.
No natural place in this life, in this time. What do I know, really, about Sinop? I can tell you what I remember. There was a waterfall, a path and a cold swimming hole, a black beach, a white beach and lots of friendly volunteers. There was a parade with fire that seemed slightly terrifying. There were boats on legs. It was hot. Lots of people from Istanbul were there, all having fun.
II. A Conversation with Sinop
Looking back in the archive, hundreds of pictures! Very few I remember taking, yet here they are. Engaging neuropathways long since disconnected. I don’t remember the reason for these captures of space and time, but the images become familiar.
III. A Conversation with Sinop, 119,680 Hours Removed
A forced injection of thought and image.
I insert them here. Now.
Creating untried relations with this space and these walls in this time.
A monument. Perched above our gravitational experience, leads our gaze to the sky. Encircling us in an undelineated colour field. Irreverent. What is meant to humble us only serves to make everything that surrounds us feel small.
Walls, like skin, have layers. The smooth rendered outer surface donned in aspirational colours. Resilient, up to a point. Its underneath we find nerves, bones, muscle. Form following function and function following form. Delineated. Protected. Mine distinct from Yours.
Shadows by day, objects collect. Some are no doubt placed there with intent. Most, I imagine, gravitate there unconsciously. It is flat and out of the way. United in a protective layer of dust.
This place. How many shoes trod up, down. Full of purpose. Urgency even. Tending to repetitive needs. Delineated by class and capital. Tread. Listing to the left. Softened by soles.
Behind the scenes. The labour of efficiency. Built upon the efforts of other people, in other times. Quickly made redundant by other efforts of other people. Ubiquitous for a time. Relics gather. Pushed aside, ramshackle, rusting or recycled. A few hold on to become vintage. Nostalgia slithers past.
Towards the light. An opening. An opportunity. We lost you there for a moment. My mind was elsewhere. That reminds me of something. Meanwhile my legs ascend the stairs.
He ascends. To meet a higher part of the same wall face to face. Taller, smaller, one point perspective, away, away. Looking just beyond the tips of his toes he can see…
Julie Upmeyer is an artist and initiator that lived in Istanbul from 2006 until 2017. She was a part of the 2nd Sinopale in 2008 with her project ‘Virtual Chef : Black Sea’, a participatory cooking event connecting live through the internet with the ‘chef’ across the sea in Odessa. She now lives on Anglesey, an island in the North of Wales. The livestream and image series were created inside Plas Bodfa, a 100-year-old manor house that Julie and her husband are in the process of renovating.
This project will look at Sinopale as a site of relational encounters through each edition of the biennial and explore what kind of previously non-existing or invisible links between Sinop and other places occurred through the art works produced and exhibited in Sinop. By being situated in a specific place, a biennial raises the question of what it means for artists, art works, and audiences to be at that specific place at that specific time, when it is no longer possible to think of places and times as disparate entities in a global world