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mahalla events

In Between Things – Unpredictable Emotions

Location: Kurtuluş Greek School

01.09.2022 – 10.09.2022

daily 12:00 – 8:00 pm


Finding things, finding things to do.
Being found by things.
Where are we taken by things happening? Following impulses, following things.

We are bringing things to the table of discussion, work, and narration. Subjects, objects, or non-identified somethings with non-purpose.

A place to put everything. Almost over.

The Austrian artist Anna Schwarz is participating into the Mahalla Festival with an interactive installation in the frame of a three month residency program by the Federal Ministry of Arts, Culture, Public Service, and Sports.

Anna Schwarz is preparing the installation In Between Things – Unpredictable Emotions in cooperation with the Istanbul based artist Dilruba Balak whom Anna Schwarz approached to know in 2019 through an art space she was running at the time, Suzie Shride. Dilruba Balak was supposed to start a Master’s program at the University of Applied Arts Vienna. Still, those plans got impeded due to visa problems and an escalation with the Austrian authorities; Anna Schwarz offered support and reached out.

At the begining of her residency Anna Schwarz visited Dilruba in her studio on the island of Heybeliada; they quickly began to recapitulate the past and realized they had many common themes in their artistic practice:

We began a collaborative artistic process that focused on how the unseen, unsaid, and forgotten are part of an obstacle to furthering narratives. The status of objects and subjects is ambivalent due to the existence of the present and the role we play in our history. Current narratives are playfully exchanged, and symbols are gestures in an ever-changing flow of things.

The methodology of the project we are approaching is a very playful act with what we have to offer as two artists meeting and inviting each other’s perspectives. The venue of the Mahalla Festival, the old closed elementary Greek school Kurtuluş Son Durak, plays into both what is created and the context of the encounters in which we become entangled.

The materials used can come from different areas. We find them in Istanbul’s markets, bazaars, stores, streets, and so on: fabrics, paper, clothes, and remnants of all cultural artifacts brought together to be referenced, a starting point for conversations, stencils, and models to put something on flat surfaces, as paper and/or fabrics stretched on canvases.


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