MELİKE KOÇAK - ON BOREDOM AND GRAINS
My family immigrated from Central Anatolia. It has always been a place I went to on holidays to kiss my older relatives' hands. It was a place I would only see from afar. A territory owned by conservative Turkish white man. A tourist destination that a woman cannot visit by herself. A place to put my prejudices in. A concept.
The land of boredom, a purgatory of endless lowlands of the steppe. A region that sentences its citizens into endless waiting without knowing what they are waiting for. Cities surrounded by beautifully, brutally silent wheatfields, the burning sun in the summer, and zero dampness. Abandoned factories. Hundreds of shopping malls and coffee shops. No libraries. Lots of mosques.
When I turned 18, I decided to get to know my hometown. It would be the perfect remedy for my genetically inherited boredom.
'On Boredom and Grains' is a visual coping mechanism I came up with during my solo travel across Central Anatolia. It was a way to not think about how the cultural domination of Turkish white men makes it impossible for me to bond with my hometown as a secular woman. Through my fantasy of this place as a weird mix of conservatism, rural silence, and bold aesthetic choices, the series reflects the sense of boredom dominating the daily life of its citizens, exposed under the burning midday sun only to be forgotten till the next day.