ABOUT THE PROJECT
Alligator Skin Box: memoirs of a young nomad is a video installation that explores dislocation and absurdity - a common experience for migrants immersed in foreign places. Turkish folk traditions juxtaposed with dream-like experiences create a magical reality for the audience to discover.
The installation consists of five short animated videos displayed on monitors inside suitcases mounted on the wall with booklets of my short stories the videos are based on. The five videos (named from the corresponding stories) are Alligator Skin Box Full of Gum, Merry Go Round – Bulgur Balls, Tree Trunk House, Butcher Rules and Lead Lizard. Each video contains various layers including animated still images and video, audio narration of story bits and other sounds inspired by the story elements. The visualized stories all share two characters (a man and the nomadic narrator woman—me), and feature animated paper sculptures. Each story reveals this nomad’s experience by emphasizing a different aspect of being a foreigner (nostalgia, strangeness, bewilderment, disorientation, confusion and absurdity) in each video.
* Alligator Skin Box: memoirs of a young nomad will be exhibited at the Interdisciplinary Arts MFA Thesis Exhibition in May.
** The video on the project page is a compilation of excerpts from each video.
WHAT WILL THE MONEY BE USED FOR?
I am seeking financial support for the completion of the videos, the installation, and the publishing of illustrated book of my short stories. These include the cost of paper sculptures, costumes and other props that appear in the video. I also need financial assistance for purchasing the vintage suitcases, paints and other materials needed for installing the show. It would be a great help to get funding for public relations materials such as business cards, posters, postcards and a website. This project is a part of a larger project that consists of an illustrated book of more short stories, other videos and mixed-media illustrations on paper. As I produce the first group of videos, I continue to write new stories in order to paint a fuller picture of the magical realist world of this nomad.
WHY AM I MAKING THIS PROJECT?
As a foreigner living in the US, I often feel misplaced. Since missing home is a dominant part of being an alien, I address these emotional, psychological and physical displacements through the reminiscence of place and time. I create an alternative to the lived life, immersing dream-like elements and inventing memories, to feel more connected to my current environment. This makes up for the fact that nowhere really feels like home anymore. Through this series of artwork I try to recreate my roots, wherever I am. While doing so, I hope to inform my audience about intricate details of Turkish culture, as well as allow them to experience what it feels like to be an alien living in a foreign land and being a stranger to your homeland. I aim to expose my audience to non-touristy side of Turkish culture. This experience is important for the viewer because it sharpens awareness, facilitates common understanding, and widens perspective.
- (30 days)