Artist / Writer
Uses various media in her artistic practice, including photography, video, performance and installation / Address subjects such as migration, war, forced displacement, collective movements, nationalism and urban transformation
Lives in Istanbul, Turkey and Berlin, Germany
LED Light City Istanbul (2013-2015)
The iconic red led matrix signs of Istanbul, like contemporary city hustlers, try to lure you into buying anything from kebab to jewelry to cruises through the Bosporus. Öğrenci, with a background in architecture, has an eye for urban phenomena. Her gaze finds currents and flows—electric currents or bodies of water—and narrates poetic stories around them. The electronic matrixes are the rays of an expanding capitalism that sheds the spotlight on the exotic, turning it into a for-sale product. Cheap electronic visual pests spread all over the globe in a unified mercantilistic language, an Esperanto of exchange. Öğrenci’s art practice and political activism have had her trialed and still have her under threat of detainment. A contemporary ferryman, a Vasudeva, or Heraclitus, watching the flow of currents and contemplating on our trivialities, Öğrenci’s work remains both poetic and political.