Köken ERGUN

Born 1976, Istanbul, Turkey
Lives and works in Istanbul

Köken Ergun works closely with minority communities to document their distinctive collective rituals, from the beauty contests of Filipino workers in Tel Aviv, to the lavish weddings of Turkish migrants in Berlin. Ergun first trained as an actor, and has described himself as drawn to performance, drama and ritual. In Ashura 2011, he records the customs of the Caferi Shiites of Zeynebiye, a suburb of Istanbul. Ashura is understood differently by Sunni and Shi'a Muslims. For the Shi'a — a minority within predominantly Sunni Turkey — it marks the death of Hussein, grandson of the Prophet Muhammed. Hussein and his followers were killed in the battle of Karbala (680CE). Traditionally a time of deep sorrow and despair, among Caferi Shiites the annual commemoration is marked by a weeping ritual and a theatrical re-enactment of the traumatic events of over 1300 years passed. In filming within such a community, Ergun believes it is important to form intimate, long-term relationships, as a close observer. This is visible in his decision to use a hand-held camera, offering a highly personal viewpoint.

GOMA LEVEL 3

Gallery 3.1

Köken Ergun, Ashura (still) 2011

Köken Ergun, Turkey, b.1976 / Ashura (still) 2011 / Three-channel HD video installation, 16:9, 27:20 minutes, colour, sound / Courtesy: The artist / © The artist.

Köken Ergun's video work installed in APT8

Köken Ergun's video work installed in APT8.

Köken Ergun, Ashura (still) 2011

Köken Ergun, Turkey, b.1976 / Ashura (still) 2011 / Three-channel HD video installation, 16:9, 27:20 minutes, colour, sound / Courtesy: The artist / © The artist.

Köken Ergun, Ashura (still) 2011

Köken Ergun, Turkey, b.1976 / Ashura (still) 2011 / Three-channel HD video installation, 16:9, 27:20 minutes, colour, sound / Courtesy: The artist / © The artist.

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