Witnessing Gezi Park
Curator: Sinan Eren Erk
September 12 – October 29 2017
Opening: Tuesday, September 12 - 18:00-21:00
The personal exhibition of TülinOnat's new series opens on Tuesday, September 12, at Piramid Sanat.
The Gezi Park protests have changed millions of people’s lives forever since the first day of the resistance. The resistance that started in Taksim’sGezi Park and spread all over the country and whose traces are still continuing today, is a mass protest not only being one of the most important events in the recent history of Turkey but also being a rare example in the world with its magnitude.
Onat, who joined the Gezi protests, presents to the audience with what she has been through since 2013 and her perspective of the resistance with GAME OVER: WitnessingGezi Park exhibition.
The exhibition, which is curated by SinanErenErk, allows for a new reading of the before and after of the Gezi protests through TülinOnat’s perspective.
“The artist creates not only an individual but also a social breathing space on this important path in her personal history, and then presents to the audience through the canvas how this area is getting smaller and how it becomes increasingly difficult to breathe. Thus, she breaks the usual perception of the image and reflects the viewer their lack of self-sufficiency, despair and fuss. She uses art, as ‘Pandora’s Box’ to show that there are still hopes. Because it is the most effective way to stand in front of the order that forces people to choose between “the lesser of the two evils.” –SinanErenErk
The exhibition, which presents a very different and new outlook from Onat’s paintings both in content and technically over the years, can be seen at Piramid Sanat until October 29, 2017.
SHOWING DEATH TO PERSUADE FOR ANGUISH
Sinan Eren Erk
A New Player Is Coming!
Wooden boxed game machines, tube screens, dark, dozens of colorful lights flashing in in tiny lounges, high-tempo synthetic melodies, each calling to a different adventure, people shouting excitedly, angrily, joyfully, a never-ending buzz; when the entertainment arrcades of the 80's opened up, no one expected these huge game boxes to be so successful.
With the demilitarization and development of computer technology, the gaming frenzy emerged in the United States and soon spread to the whole world with various corporations producing personal computers or game consoles. People spend their time challenging and defeating these machines, throwing in more coins as the game revolved over increasing levels of difficulty. Games that were set sometimes in space, sometimes in the streets of their city, in the past, in the future, or in the present, with scripts limited only by imagination, were giving a whole new experience to people. Even the dingy, non-ventilated arcades, the money spent, eyes stinging from constantly gazing at the screen, and the unbearable headaches were not enough to get them away from this experience. The players were becoming, rather they believed that they were becoming an explorer, a football player, a car racer, or a masterful fighter pilot in front of these machines. The entry of video games into our lives meant that the doors of new worlds waiting to be discovered were opening wide to the players. The games of that period were despite the compared to today, low-quality pixellated visuals and 8bit melodies, as popular then as their current examples are today. Just as a drop falling onto water creates waves, video games created a refelctions which effects are still ongoing in society. In fact, games that are a rented entertainment service, strangely, with the characteristics they posses, form a unique resource for explaining simulation and reality in order to understand today's societies.
This article aims to make an analysis on this structure after first establishing an infrastructure through concepts by considering the process long before the emergence of games. In this direction, after considering the factors surrounding the human life in today's society, the systems in which it lives will be examined and the analysis will be developed in detail. The writer will finally explain the Gezi Protests that are the base of this exhibition and how the painter Tülin Onat's testimony to the process transformed into an artistic creation.
In order to be able to explain the topics mentioned above in writing this article, which is divided into subheadings and collected in several sections, I tried to bring together the things that seem to be independent from each other depending on different areas of life, historical plane or geographical position and tried to support these ideas with examples like the method we followed with Tülin Onat in the formation of this exhibition. But I consciously refrained from basing my narrative on a conventional method, comparing an art discipline with others of the same level, examining the creation of the artist by means of mediators. By pulling the roots of the period's depressions from the depths of history, I strived to write the social and political facts that underlie the Gezi Park Protests, from my own perspective, with a clean mind. Therefore, my contribution to this vision exercise, which is solely and solely based on the testimony of Tülin Onat, is to add a frame of general environmental factors to the ground on which my contribution can stand. Therefore I did not go through the examples of the history of painting on the pages you will read. Rather, because the starting point is a very subjective personal experience, a witnessing of an important social phenomenon, with the different combinations of sciences that artistic creation reaches its roots into such as cinema and literature, the neighbouring disciplines to painting, philosophy, sociology, phenomenology, and with the intellectual movements these sparked off, I aimed to create a dynamic structure by creating muscle tissue around the skeleton of the text.
To inquisitive minds and everyone who runs after the truth fearlessly, without ever losing hope...
Homo Homini Lupus
In order to understand the natural development of humans, it is necessary to examine their relationship with nature and their struggle with nature. Although the discovery of fire and the use of tools constitute an important breaking point, the process from nomadic being to living in settlements can be regarded as the beginning of the social approach to human history. This turning point has not only changed the course of history, but it has created an area where the effects of existence are still being studied. These progressive and regular rules that make the individual evolve collectively constitute the concept of the state. The state must, of course, have the capacity to produce systematic, ie, new ways of continuing its existence, in order to meet the basic needs of the living person and to enable him/her to live his/her life. In other words, in order for the state to be legitimate, it must first be determined how the society will live, what rules will be applied here and how it will continue its existence. In a healthy model, it is expected that once the division of labour has determined who is going to deal with what, the administrators and the administered must be in unity.
The states established in Mesopotamia, Central Asia, North Africa and Anatolia were followed by the European civilizations. However, perhaps the foundation of the present state understanding can be found in ancient Greece. This is because one of the important pioneers of science and phylosophy, present day Greece's geography points to a background where questioning is applied to every area of life, using positivist and rational thinking based on critical thinking and scientific methods. The lives of the societies and the state phenomenon got their shares of this questioning. One of the most important documents of antiquity trying to define the state is Plato's book Republic which itself consists of ten books. This book constitutes one of the most important examples of the question of the state, just as Roman Law that has been studied as a systematic whole in the modern sense of justice, and this book represents a turning point in the understanding of today's management structure. Plato, while cross-examined the people with the state they lived in and the state with the urban people it created, the values of morality and justice, was in fact trying to find the legitimate ground for settled life. In this way, the relationship between the identity of the person living in a polis - the city-state in its Greek meaning - and those of the ruling people was determined and urban people in today's society were defined. Physical evolution was integrated with mental evolution, homo sapiens transformed into homo civitatis. However in this work which is thought to have been written around 380, while the definitions of the state, people and administration were made it was also questioned how the systems could go wrong .
“And the protector of the people is like him; having a mob entirely at his disposal, he is not restrained from shedding the blood of kinsmen; by the favourite method of false accusation he brings them into court and murders them, making the life of man to disappear, and with unholy tongue and lips tasting the blood of his fellow citizen; some he kills and others he banishes, at the same time hinting at the abolition of debts and partition of lands: and after this, what will be his destiny? Must he not either perish at the hands of his enemies, or from being a man become a wolf --that is, a tyrant?”
This anticipation of Plato unfortunately turned into reality, and it was seen in different societies during other periods of history. During the development of urban people, problems began to arise depending on the law or the social order. The new regulatory requirements thus emerged brought a new era. The state system of Plato's boundaries set the stage for the unifying city states to turn into feudal structures and kingdoms. But humans became the victims of greed. Rather than adjust wealth and division of power in itself justly the power, as already predicted, began to be aggregated in a single center. In fact, although this emerged as a survival strategy for the state mechanism, the problems could not be solved because some basic principles (such as the constant need for well-intentioned managers) were open to abuse. The process from the city states to kingdoms and then to empires led to the beginning of the era of colonies as a result of the state's emphasis on military technology and the desire to broaden its borders and achieve even greater power. Here, the decisive factor was economy. In other words, the development process that started with hunting and gathering legitimized the person who had passed the nomadic life and settled with the state structure first and now was being referred to the next stage. The new goal of man who prevailed nature is now to become superior to the other.
The Age of Discovery continued until no new place on the earth was left to be discovered. The realization of underground and overland wealth in favorable new places, in possesion of the "other", led to the movement of colonialism. Europe which had previously opposed Galileo and Magellan, now captured new societies that it had discovered with technology developed as a result of positive thinking with a logic based not on the strength of justice but on the justification of power and tried to include them in a market in which the production-consumption balance was supplied. These states were using technology to establish their legitimate grounds and trying to achieve ideological goals, not the ideal society. As military technologies impoved, the work of the colonial states became easier. As the created market grew, production increased and the increased production had to be met. But this was not always possible. The world had now started to turn around the axis of economy. And this was from then on a symbol of urban people perceiving the world through economy. Homo civitatis evolved into homo economicus.
This new area of domination enabled ideology to spread more easily. The industrial revolution, in this aspect, should not only be regarded as a technological progress but also as an ideological development and expansion. The Industrial Revolution which began in the 18th century, became the savior of the global system which had begun to emerge due to colonization having to be left behind for many different reasons. Thus, the colonial states brought the foci of power that they had built on religion or loyalty to the upper echelon and placed economy on the basis of the nation states in Europe. One of the most important works written during this period is undoubtedly Adam Smith's book The Wealth of Nations. Because it is not only a current analysis prepared by an economist, but it should also be perceived as the manifesto of converging capitalism. It is mentioned in the book how the economy will function and how social interests can actually be achieved by considering individual interests. Accordingly, moving in line with one's own interests will lead to the development of the community. Smith argues that production and consumption will then reach a balance by itself. The name of this system is the invisible hand.
“As every individual, therefore, endeavours as much as he can both to employ his capital in the support of domestic industry, and so to direct that industry that its produce may be of the greatest possible value; every individual necessarily labours to render the annual revenue of the society as great as he can. (…) he is in this, as in many other cases, led by an invisible hand to promote and end which has no part of his intention. Nor is it always the worse for the society that it was no part of it.by pursuing his own interest he frequently promotes that of the society more effectually than when he really intends to promote it.”
Though this theory seems logical in itself from an economist’s point of view, this affirmation on the basis of capitalism shows in fact large similarities to Plato's rhetoric of the ruler collecting all power on himself therefore either becoming a tyrant or losing his life. A system that takes the capital in its center and always focuses on gaining more, will one day not be as profitable as it once was. Because one of the constants the economy is based on is that the resources on earth are limited. For this reason, man who first tried to dominate nature and then to take the other under control, thus completes the next step of evolution. But the sustainability of this economic theory as a system creates a problem in itself.
The end of the 18th century is a period of time when the Industrial Revolution thoroughly matured and at the same time rational thinking gradually increased its weight in Europe and in the United States with the Declaration of Independence in 1776. Colonialism and the subsequent capitalization process, the economic and cultural deterioration that occurred after the Industrial Revolution, would naturally produce a reaction. This reaction was the rise of rational thought and eventually the emergence of the freedom movement. The French Revolution of 1789 on the one hand sought to lift the side effects of the industrial revolution, but on the other hand it laid the groundwork for capitalism's victory. Because even though the movement of freedom that moved the masses, the movement that put rationalizm and enlightenment as a prerequisite to culture's cumulative evolvement, the liberation movement adopted in society by spreading outwardly from the geography where it was sourced, had a revolutionary and socialist rather than individualist approach, the invisible hand that Adam Smith refers to secretly was increasing its effectiveness with politics in the ruling layers. At the beginning of the 20th century, technological developments and search for economic markets more and more polarized European states in particular and brought people back to square one of the entire evolutionary process. The person who considered himself dominant over nature and afterwards tried to dominate each other with systems he produced, could not resist the selfishness in his nature and regardless of how high his tools and technology were, started to see it a right to crush the other for his own profit in his pursuit of power.
The process that started with the 20th century, which is one of the most important breaking points of human history, in which technical developments started to take part in every area of our lives with great acceleration, is now built on the survival of ideologies and systems, not humans and has become time zone where the boundaries increasingly thin out. The early years of the century mark a turning point in which humanity has come closer to annihilating each other being stuck between economy and ideologies. Especially after the discovery of the American continent and the founding of the United States in the process has radically changed the course of Europe. The search for new markets, the search for new ideas, the effort to find new outings unfortunately brought two of the bloodiest wars in history back to back; the Second World War broke out shortly after the First World War. Of course, The Great Depression period in the United States between the two World Wars should not be forgotten here. Military and economic developments brought the concept of nation-state and the management systems in general under the scope to an even greater extent than in the past. With colonialism that emerged after mercantilism's transformation in decline, the capitalist economies, in a sense emerging to save it in the 16th century, are now in full bloom in the 20th century. The urban person evolving into the economic person is now once again transformed and perhaps in its most lethal form: he is now a predatory animal that can use its mind for its purposes and can adapt quickly to circumstances, whatever they are. Because he had to admit that the resources available were limited, and he now began to use the other as a source in its abstract and concrete meanings. In short, now "man is wolf to man" and since the economy is involved, the money used to meet certain needs has now become the resource to be exploited and the wealth to be obtained. Thus Plato's tyrant wolf unites with Adam Smith's selfish individual and tries to satisfy man's search for power through money. Karl Marx in the First Volume of Capital, that was written a while before the 20th Century, mentions this change in the part The Transformation of Money to Capital as:
“The simplest form of the circulation of commodities is C-M-C, the transformation of commodities into money, and the change of the money back again into commodities; or selling in order to buy. But alongside of this form we find another specifically different form: M-C-M, the transformation of money into commodities, and the change of commodities back again into money; or buying in order to sell. Money that circulates in the latter manner is thereby transformed into, becomes capital, and is already potentially capital”
The fundamental problem of capitalist economies was the necessity of providing market demand and continuous consumption, which emerged by the use of machines and the production capacity. At the end of two World Wars that emerged while it was being discussed how to solve this, the rich and powerful - often colonial - states of the past were confronted with destruction, contrary to their goals. But the concept of systematic disinformation that emerged during World War II has a major role in moving the urban man to the last stage of his evolution mentioned here. Joseph Goebbels, the propaganda minister who had one of the most diseased but sharpest intellects of Nazi Germany, the superpower of the period, was one of the leading theorists and practitioners of this concept. The disinformation had such a great influence on the societies that for example a great majority of the voters of the Nazi Party found out about the main body of the Jewish Holocaust, the concentration camps, only after the end of the war. The diversion of information and perception being managed at will having such great influence, propaganda should not be intellectually satisfying but only popular as stated by Goebbels , his politics were proven in the end.
After the war especially in the United States, the many different state disinformation methods were examined. These methods proved to be effective not only in the Second World War but also in the Cold War era, which began in the 60s and was basically between the United States and Russia. In this way disinformation has become an important part of today's perception management methods. It is therefore necessary to take into account the evolutionary stages of the intellectual process in which systems, including economic or state organization, are first integrated into society beginning from the nomadism of man, to understand something, a formation or a thought, for an individual or a social matter to come to light.
Although this situation draws a pessimistic picture, it carries important data in order to understand today's state concept and the person within in the state. So is there no way to change this? Can States and economies determine our thoughts in our place? Are societies dominated by ideologies and economics in the contemporary world? If so, what is the ideal? These questions lead us to examine the opposite concepts of utopia and distopia.
The Light at the End of the Tunnel and the Tunnel at the End of the Light
What kind of place do we want to live in? Amongst whom, within what laws and regulations? What comprises in our minds when we say a country, a state, a city? What is the ideal according to us? Of course, even a single concept can have countless inclinations even in the minds of only two people. Especially when the stated concept has many variables in itself, the thoughts that come up bring the diversity of the whole to infinite probability. In short, even in the formation of a simple idea, it is necessary to make a choice from close to an infinite amount of possibilities. For this reason, the state phenomenon or the place lived in brings about a very complex and variable-dependent identification effort that varies from person to person.
When Thomas More wrote Utopia, his most well-known book, the concept that we use today was not yet available. In the novel, the ideal society and state order for people is defined, in which order, where, how and under which constraints (or limitations) people can live in, and even many other issues like classless equality society, fair trade and what we dicuss today were in a sense being opened up to debate. While questioning the ideal society through the Utopians, it also examined the concept of "the other" which is point of current discussions and presented rhetorically how many things we experience and accept can be terrible or meaningless for someone else who is not aware of these things. More's publishing of such a book, while the Age of Enlightenment was not yet entered into was of course one of the important milestones for the coming of the Age of Enlightenment.
“The Utopians wonder how any man should be so much taken with the glaring doubtful lustre of a jewel or a stone, that can look up to a star or to the sun himself; or how any should value himself because his cloth is made of a finer thread; for, how fine soever that thread may be, it was once no better than the fleece of a sheep, and that sheep, was a sheep still, for all its wearing it. They wonder much to hear that gold, which in itself is so useless a thing, should be everywhere so much esteemed that even man, for whom it was made, and by whom it has its value, should yet be thought of less value than this metal; that a man of lead, who has no more sense than a log of wood, and is as bad as he is foolish, should have many wise and good men to serve him, only because he has a great heap of that metal; and that if it should happen that by some accident or trick of law (which, sometimes produces as great changes as chance itself) all this wealth should pass from the master to the meanest varlet of his whole family, he himself would very soon become one of his servants, as if he were a thing that belonged to his wealth, and so were bound to follow its fortune! But they much more admire and detest the folly of those who, when they see a rich man, though they neither owe him anything, nor are in any sort dependent on his bounty, yet, merely because he is rich, give him little less than divine honours, even though they know him to be so covetous and base-minded that, notwithstanding all his wealth, he will not part with one farthing of it to them as long as he lives!”
With the acceptance of inquisitive thoughts by the masses laid the grounds of contemporary philosophy, the question "in what place to live?" became more important with the search for the value of freedom and human life. El Dorado, (El Rey Dorado or El Hombre Dorado) just as the Fountain of Youth  , was more like a flagship flagship of a culture in pursuit of wealth and power. Yet More's Utopia was based on abstract values such as labor, equality, justice, and freedom. In the years when the Industrial Revolution began, the breakthrough created by the writing of such a book gradually expanded the question of the concept of place. Leibniz relates the utopia to divinity and rationality in his book "Theodicy: Essays on the Goodness of God, the Freedom of Man & the Origin of Evil" written on religion and ethics, and asserts that we all live - if there are other universes and worlds - in the best possible world. Because if there are different worlds, we are not aware of it, therefore the option in our possession is necessarily the only and the best option. This, however, seems to support fatalism rather than a utopian thought and is therefore far from scientific. For this reason, Voltaire examines the problems and distortions of the world in that time in the novel Candide, published in January 1759, as a question of great optimism. In this way he stands against Leibniz's argument and ends his novel by showing rationality, positive thought, and worldview around the axis of realism as the only way out. Candide and his friends see how even optimism can lead to evil in the world order that is dominated by sordidness and settle in Istanbul after all the adventures that include a return trip to El Dorado. The book ends with Candide telling his companion Pangloss to ignore his efforts to define their settling down in Istanbul in a fatalistic way as the positive result of all they experienced and them tending their gardens is all that is needed. The author’s sentence he uses at the end of the book “il faut cultiver notre terre”, actually carries a double meaning. On one hand, Candide tells us that all wars, colonialism and inequality are possible by cultivating the land, while on the other hand he tells us that the best living space will be created by cultivating intelligence and knowledge. The verb cultiver used here refers to dealing with actual land, but the word is derived from the same root as the word the culture.
As one of Voltaire's works that prepared the ground for the French Revolution, Candide emerged as a product of the tradition of illumination, and the adventures of the hero evocative of Odysseus, mediated and inspired numerous works such as Kubrick's Barry Lyndon, which can be considered the 20th century adaptation of Homeros' work, the Coen Brothers' Where Art Thou Brother and Maddin's Keyhole films and novels such as Joyce's Ulysses, Faulkner's As I Lay Dying, Wallace's Big Fish, Tolkien's The Hobbit.
However, the Age of Enlightenment and the modernization movement had a septic structure. Eventually the utopia came face to face with a dark reality that was its own contrast, dystopia. This concept changed the pure and evil-free side of the utopia, instead describing a world based on wisdom distributed nonhomogenously with sordidness, insidiousness, control and oppression being dominant. The term was first used in 1818 by Jeremy Bentham, one of the main names of utilitarian phylosophy, in the form of cacotopya, taking its root from the Ancient Greek cacos meaning bad, ominous and later was replaced with the prefix dys- that carried the same meaning as cacos- but was used more widely in the period's English. Dystopia's essential was not to create a dead-end scenario but to point out the possibilities by showing the advanced stages of the problems. The widespread wars and economic crises, especially since the beginning of the 20th century, led to widespread dissemination of dystopic literary works, especially when printed publications were considered to be more effective due to the lack of adequate functionality of the radio. In this period, long before Orwell's Animal Farm and 1984, Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451 and Rand's Atlas Shrugged, Aldous Huxley's Brave New World, published in 1931 included its author's brilliant foresights. So much so that the dystopic universe he created was a structure in which the industrial giant Henry Ford was sanctified and states left their places to companies. People were not reproducing naturally, but were being "developed" in a laboratory environment. Huxley, while questioning the future through the Savage character who even though standing against this cycle amongst all characters, still succumbs and commits suicide in the end, was still looking for the ideal.
"I say," Helmholtz exclaimed solicitously, "you do look ill, John!"
"Did you eat something that didn't agree with you?" asked Bernard.
The Savage nodded. "I ate civilization."
"It poisoned me; I was defiled. And then," he added, in a lower tone, "I ate my own wickedness."
"Yes, but what exactly? … I mean, just now you were …"
"Now I am purified," said the Savage.
As ideas about what the ideal could be diversified the common denominator behind it became increasingly dominant and it became possible to find common ground on equality, freedom and a desire for living humanly. Yet, because of the right to refuse, which is one of the most important points in the definition of freedom and the diversity of the existing distortions, it provided unlimited resources for distopia. For this reason, along with the Age of Enlightment, dystopic depictions always tended to be higher than utopias. Artistic creations changing and diversifying with modernization benefited from technology and led to the emergence of a new narrative form of new disciplines such as photography and film.
The differentiation of the narrative takes its roots from the early years of the 20th century, when technology made a huge leap. This progressive ground that can be defined as technological and cultural development, global polarization, the rise of nation states also became a scene of great changes in the artistic sense. On the other hand, the great struggle of this extraordinary stride has manifested itself in the form of two World Wars and after the modernization movement reached a maturity level, it could only record its first wave of spreading in the 50's. Nevertheless, forms of artistic narratives were able to advance with independent efforts, especially moving visuality (cinema, television, video, etc.), one of the basic narrative instruments of our day and use a small effect before they were totally incorporated into propaganda. George Méliès, a visionary born in the second half of the nineteenth century, used his unique narrative technique through theater decorations, costumes and players, and the year after in 1901 being succesfull in filming The Man with the Rubber Head in which he played all the characters himself - it is about three minutes long - he succeeded in filming Jules Verne's A Trip to the Moon as a 13 minute short film with items that can be counted as special effects. However the main reason this fantastical film that we can on one hand call utopic, entering cinema history as a cult film is, apart from Méliès' s brilliance, is how effective this alternative narrative form is. Sixteen years later, in the end of the film named The Bond, written and directed by Charlie Chaplin for the economic government of Wilson in the United States in 1918, the German Kaiser who was defeated in the First World War is hit on the head with a mallet named Liberty Bonds / Liberty Bills and faints. But The Bond is one of cinema's most well-known name Chaplin's work that stayed in the shadows. Because this film, which was filmed before the Great Depression, unfortunately presented this new field of narration to the service of politics and for this reason it moved away from originality.
In the year before the signing of the Treaty of Versailles, Germany experienced a revolution similar to that of Russia in 1917 and according to the decision of the national committee gathered in Weimar at the end of the war, transformed into the Republic of Weimar and entered the process of restructuring. It was period until the chancellorhood of Hitler in 1933, nicknamed "Wolf", when the German expressionist movement was active. This movement, which created works in architecture, dance, painting, sculpture and cinema, played an important role in the transformation of the narrative. However, with the rise of the Nazi Party, the Bauhaus first closed down the Weimar, Dessau, and finally the three branches in Berlin, and then the cinematographers of the movement scattered to different places. The golden age of 1924-29 led to the emergence of Fritz Lang's Metropolis, perhaps one of the leading dystopian works in the field of moving visuals. The film, made in 1927, 4 years before Brave New World was published, was about the horrible industrialization potential of the future and the mechanization of man. Lang was so important to his era that in 1933, after completing The Testament of Dr. Mabuse, he was called by Joseph Goebbels. Propaganda Minister Goebbels told Lang that he was very influenced by his cinema and asked him to make propaganda films for the Nazi Party. On the other hand, He did not forget to add that some of the scenes in The Testament of Dr. Mabuse movie would have a negative impact on the public, and that they would ban the film, claiming it would reduce the dignity of statesmen. Lang, according his own accord refused this offer and fled to Paris after the meeting on the same evening of 1934.
“The ultimate purpose of crime is to establish the endless empire of crime. A state of complete insecurity and anarchy, founded upon the tainted ideals of a world doomed to annihilation. When humanity, subjugated by the terror of crime, has been driven insane by fear and horror, and when chaos has become supreme law, then the time will have come for the empire of crime.”
After this genre of film with a dystopic, dark and stifling atmosphere, between the early 1940's and late 50's the film noir genre, taking its name in 1946 from the French cinema critic Nino Frank, emerged in Hollywood. Aside of Orson Welles, noir generally moved forward with important names of mainly Germanic origin such as Billy Wilder, Robert Siodmak, Otto Preminger and Fritz Lang, on crime stories and based on a distopian culture, in later years bravely used occasional futurism and sometimes fantasy or alternative universes theory and prepared a base for the neo-noir genre. From the 70's onwards, many directors such as Ridley Scott, Terry Gilliam, Alex Proyas, Tim Burton, Christopher Nolan, Robert Rodriguez and Quentin Tarantino have filmed dystopian neo-noir films that can be considered to have cult status today.
Throughout the world, as the narrative forms that appeal to the masses become more diversified, new sub-titles form in art and the influence of art on masses is increasing with the help of technology. In the past, disciplines such as theater, dance, music, etc., which were only based on testimony, could now be recorded and in some cases could relay the perceptive to the viewer/listener even better all around.
The Dilemma of Perception: Transfer and Testimony
Even when the cameras were still pinhole camera camera obscuras, they were able to create their own culture rapidly and became widespread notably through family photographs and photographs taken by the soldiers going to war. These mostly documentary photographs were before long passed on from civilian life to military life and examples of war photography began to be seen in the middle of the century. Shortly after the invention of photography in the first half of the 19th century, the question of how it could be transformed into moving images was raised. Because the idea of capturing the moment came from the idea of transferring the moment, and for this reason the tendency to arrive at the transfer of moments from the moment when the possibility of transferring a certain moment began to occur.
War photography introduced the community to destruction, death, battlefields and fronts that up until that day were only known to a small number of people who knew the what happened on a battlefield, while fundamentally losing the being up close and personal with death lifestyle when evolving from being nomads to settled life, but this time it was embedding it into the life of modern man. The daguerreotypes of the 1840's, where copper plates, made of silver nitrate were made susceptible to light and the image was captured through mercury vapor at the end of a 20-minute exposure time in the camera obscura, started to unroll the battlefield with all its nakedness in front of the eyes of the wretched townsmen. A similar confrontation took place for the war photographers. Robert Capa, who is a founding member of one of the world's most prestigious subsidiaries, Magnum Photos and who has been a correspondent in many wars, amongst them La Guerra between 1936-39 and the Second World War, described the trauma of the conveyance of a battlefield on a correspondent as follows:
“I would say that the war correspondent gets more drinks, more girls, better pay, and greater freedom than the soldier, but at this stage of the game, having the freedom to choose his spot and being allowed to be a coward and not be executed for it is his torture.”
The transfer of hwat was happening on battlefields through documents is one of the important traumatic moments of narrative history. Prior to this, audio-visual arts such as theater, literature, dance, music or information directly or indirectly "reflected" by witnesses began to be transmitted visually before sound was recorded. Until then, the majority who never had directly, without mediators, been face to face with the bloody face of wars that erupted, experienced a great social nausea. This is one part of the sense of civilization that Huxley originally worked through the character of John. It is such a nausea that one of the most important representatives of the existentialism movement of which Kierkegaard lay the foundations, Sartre made it his topic even before the Second World War happened.
“We were no more than a heap of anxious, self-depressed existing beings. There was no one reason for us to be here, none of us would have been able to offer such a reason. Everyone who was in shame and every existential who had an uncertain anxiety felt himself in excess in the face of others. Excess.”
From the 1930s, photography began to convey the crime and murder stories of its own streets to the city dweller. This was perhaps a work done to get rid of the traumas formed by war photos through familiarization. However, in countries such as the United States, particularly shook by the Great Depression, this type of reporting was an invaluable source of sales for newspapers and tabloids. In a country founded by immigrants, the moment that curiosity and paranoia began to work on individuals, the efforts to attain information increased but the critical sensitivity diminished. Crime photographs were not only located in the archives of security forces, but at the same time they developed metropolitan culture. Were people to get used to nausea the more they were exposed to it? Did the big cities start to push people to unresponsiveness, stupefication, numbness? The "country of opportunity" that could carry out atomic bomb experiments on its own soldiers could, of course, use its people as a guinea pig in a trial and error method to establish a balance of power between the state and society.
In those days, Europe began to make sense of the chaos brought about by wars and economic collapse with philosophy and art andstarted to perform the autopsy of the collapse. Fenomenology, which examines experiential processes and perceptions in an inductive way, even though it found its roots in the beginning of the century it also found its comprehensive field of study in anxiety and interrogated the antagonisms together with similarities. This intellectual field, which started with Husserl and became methodical with Schütz, defined man first in order to examine the narrative. This definition would in the future provide a wide range of interrogation space for existentialists as well as play a major role in understanding transference and narrative processes.
“It is no more natural, and no less conventional, to shout in anger or to kiss in love than to call a table ‘a table’. Feelings and passional conduct are invented like words. Even those which, like paternity, seem to be part and parcel of the human make-up are in reality institutions.17 It is impossible to superimpose on man a lower layer of behaviour which one chooses to call ‘natural’, followed by a manufactured cultural or spiritual world. Everything is both manufactured and natural in man, as it were, in the sense that there is not a word, not a form of behaviour which does not owe something to purely biological being—and which at the same time does not elude the simplicity of animal life, and cause forms of vital behaviour to deviate from their pre-ordained direction, through a sort of leakage and through a genius for ambiguity which might serve to define man.”
In the aftermath of the Second World War, increasing anti-war sentiment and the masses that started gathering in the United States and the United Kingdom against nuclear weapons started a youth movement that influenced the whole world in the 60's. Flower children said they did not want anything else but nature, peace and freedom, they lived a bohemian (?) life with alcohol, drugs, music and sex. The Hippie movement, with all its extremisms and counterpoints, actually was a result of the psychological and physical violence faced after the Industrial Revolution, and the long-questioned existential nausea. Rapidly spreading around the globe, the hippie movement in an attempt to transform the existantial, managed to produce a symbol of peace, designed by British designer Gerald Holtom in 1958, using the flags of the initials of nuclear disarmament words - mostly used in military areas - that could be deemed to be an arma of the movement. Similarly, the T1 model of the company Volkswagen - minibuses mostly furnished with Westfalia furnishings - beetles, also known as turtles in Turkey, one of the most important cultural parts of Nazi Germany, had become one of the first symbols to come to mind in correlation with the movement.
Volkswagen Type 1 was originally produced so that information could be carried quickly during battle, easily accessible to everyone, and could be used even in cold weather due to its air cooling system, unlike other cars of the period with water-cooled motors. The first design drafts of the vehicle that started with "Chancellor" Adolf Hitler personally appointing Ferdinand Porsche in 1934, were drawn by Adolf Hitler "the Painter" two years ago. While at the same time, the "city planner and architect" Hitler was working to transform Berlin into a world capital, the "art historian" Hitler was at his desk making a list of works of art to be gatherer from Europe and presented to the Aryan race.
Although Hippie culture initially emerged as a natural defensive reflex, emerging as a counter-stance, the long-lasting inclusion of synthetic drugs that had been in development for a long time into this culture, both became a working field of power foci after the bursting of the long-lived social nausea turned to lethargy, and due to emerging long-term health problems the movement began to lose its effect after a while. Actions based on collective action gradually became individualized and their intensity decreased. In this case, the situation is more than similar to the example given by Zizek in explaining why the environmentalist movement recently came to a different place in thepresent day than when it started:
“Does the predominant ecological discourse not address us as a priori guilty, indebted to mother nature, under the constant pressure of the ecological superego-agency which addresses us in our individualty: “What did you do today to repay your debt to nature? Did you put all newspapers into a proper recycle bin? And all the bottles of beer or cans of Coke? Did you use your car where you could have used a bike or some means of public transport? Did you use air conditioning instead of just opening wide the windows?” The ideological stakes of such individualization are easily discernible: I get lost in my own self-examination instead of raising much more pertinent global questions about our entire industrial civilization. Plus one should note how this culpabilitization is immediately supplemented by an easy way out: recycle, buy organic food, use renewable energy, etc., and you no longer have to feel guilty, you can enjoy your life as usual.”
Transfer has also become different with the development of the film industry. The first end result, just as was with the photograph, was the documentary genre that emerged from the request for documentation. The contribution of documentaries to the formation of cultures and the spread of knowledge have been in the form of providing unique information about places or things that people in different corners of the world had never seen or profoundly known. This direct transfer was fictionalized by the cinema. With the use of semiconductors, computer technology and electronic devices changed the development of both cinema and photography. The logic of fiction, which can be distinguished from the facts in a primitive and comfortable way, changed over time succeeding in influencing at every step the people who had never encountered such a thing. In this way, when subjects such as perception processes, human psychology and behavioral tendencies, which were experimented on extensively during the World Wars, were combined with existing technology, a perceptive management emerged. For example, the Beatles 1965 Help! album's cover is as if each one of the band members produced letter, using the pennant sign language in the nuclear disarmament symbol. However, Robert Freeman, who took the photographs for this album, stated that the idea had come from him, but that they later improvised because the positioning of the arms were not good during the shooting. The resulting album cover actually contained NUJV-in the copies of the United States, Paul McCartney's left-hand was set to point to the logo of the record label Capitol Records and as a result NVUJ- nonsensical words consistent of these letters were placed.
In short, with one of the most important turning points of recent history World War II's end new narrative techniques developed through scientific methods, taking advantage of realism backing the transfer to control people who transformed into economic wolves, and put into an appropriate structure to manipulate, bring to a headlock or divert the focal point when needed. Distortion of reality sometimes could go so far that even if the distorted information and its true fact had a clear conrtast as clear as black and white it would go unnoticed. The process that started at the moment when man who progressed from nomadic life to settled life delegated editorial power on first faith, then management and information now in modern times matured. Management of social consciousness in modern times caused by the perception created in a planned manner by the managing bodies, the tranformation of created structures into systems have been the main dynamic of the state phenomenon's and the infrastructures it comprises survival.
“The totality of beliefs and sentiments common to average members of a society forms a determinate system with a life of its own. It can be termed the collective or common consciousness. Undoubtedly the substratum of this consciousness does not consist of a single organ. By definition it is diffused over society as a whole, but nonetheless possesses specific characteristics that make it a distinctive reality. In fact, it is independent of the particular conditions in which individuals find themselves. Individuals pass on, but it abides.”
While studies in sociology, psychology and philosophy have brought progress in one direction, they can also have negative consequences, such as Albert Einstein, who is nowadays at the basis of many theories and known for his research on atomic nuclei and usually with the theory of relativity who opened the road for the construction of the atomic bomb. On the other hand exactly to the contrary, Polish descended Werhner Von Braun, who invented the V2 rocket for Nazi Germany, started working for the United States after the war and conceived the Saturn V rocket that was developed by NASA and used between 1967-73.
The visual revolution, in addition to the differentiation of the perceptual process, also revealed new methods of influence. The power of the cinematograph was really great; it could both convey the desired message as requested, and it was able to do it at the same quality and every time in the same way - as recorded - and strengthened the ideological emphasis by creating entertainment and occupation, supporting the magazine culture, over the created social exemplar figures. But these functions could only be carried out - not taking into account the magazine press had outside of the movie theaters - in the ratio the movie theaters were able to pull people into the theaters. However, the widespread use of television brought the process to a point that was unimaginable. In the beginning, this new device was taking up a lot of space, it was heavy and it was so expensive that not everyone could afford it. With these problems resolved the television became an indispensable part of houses in a very short time. This device maybe was not as glamorous as a cinema curtain, but it removed the disadvantages of the cinema and provided very important advantages. First of all it was not as far away as a movie theater and could easily be turned on and off when wanted. Even though not at first, there were many channels which gave the audience more choice than movie theaters. But the most important feature was that it was a direct source of information. If desired, news bulletin, magazine or entertainment programs could be easily watched. The right to choose was in with the audience and only the audience; or so it seemed. Moreover, because the person who was in front of the television would mostly be alone, so could watch the program he wanted as he wanted the strange, objectionable, meaningless, faulty, good, right, beautiful etc., away from society's value judgements.
Certainly the producers, the state and the managment level were aware of this. Before computers, smartphones, and the internet, the most important media element that managed perception was the television. Nevertheless, in order for the authority to reach full efficiency, it was necessary to bring together the organs scattered around in different places and create its own Frankenstein monster.
Feed My Frankenstein
Although the narration and transmission appeared in different forms, the communities eventually witnessed that these two came together and melted in each other. The process that started off orally and progressed with painting, writing, music, sculpture and generally all kinds of artistic creation, as off the 20th century started to take place not only as a means of transmission but also as a means of control.
Authority thus established its own sparkling playground, legitimizing the monster created by the intertwined narration and transmission paths that were dissolved in each other. The cumbersome but very influential structure of capitalism-based perceptionism turned into a drama queen, forced its potential disciples to always worship it, trying to draw and keep them into the system it created.
Feed my Frankenstein
Meet my libido
He's a psycho
Feed my Frankenstein
Hungry for love
And it's feeding time
However, civil technological developments changed human habits, and just as vaccines strengthen the immune system against illnesses and thus protects it, they became less effective, less surprising. At first video games served the purpose of testing the structure and boundaries of computers later on were among the main sales strategies to ensure the spreading of the computer culture - especially with the major effect of cheaper prices due to decreasing cost through serial production - in the period between the late '80s and early ' 90s.
The increase in computers readied the world for a whole new technological age. Now everything from banking to shopping, to accounting, to sports betting would be done through computers and a time-saving, smooth and error free system would be created. Nevertheless, in order for this to be fully realized it was necessary to spread the internet, which was created as a military technology in the 70s, and the parts produced by processing new materials.
As a result computers and computer systems - before smart phones entered our lives - being used by everyone differentiated the interaction and the place of experience in the learning process. Thus, even an ordinary computer user could be instructed in a certain way and even by teaching desired information in the desired way could be achieved.
Video games were aimed at opening up for more people, to appeal to new communities in the early days, with constantly evolving and developing new levels of difficulty to defeat the player. In that time the games were really just games and for fun. Still, some of the experiments were done on these types of games just like the extra frame technique in cinema.
Because the games were fun and kept the mind away from the increasingly tiring complexity of daily life, because they promised a comfort zone to people they became more common amongst younger people and because because experiential learning was more effective than the traditional learning method, the subject matters could take hold of the players more effectively. People who were already ready to be part of the reality that the game offered started to play and were becoming part of an even more unique experience in the created world with their urge of curiosity and exploration. Thus, as the experience increased, so did the influence of the games on the players. Such a game could support violence and war and potentially put young people's subconscious minds in this direction or, on the contrary, impose anti-war ideas. For example, two games that were launched in the United States in 1993 had a great contrast to their style, even though they used a similar platform as narrative language.
The first of these was a battle simulation that was produced by id Software in the near future on Mars, designed by John Romero and programmed by John Carmack. When Doom emerged, it led to great reaction and it was argued that it would have a negative effect on young people. But the production company succeeded in getting away from all these charges. The game, despite the violence it contained and the execessive bloodshed never seen before - this was also influenced by the producers' use of an advertising strategy beyond its time - became uploaded on a majority of the computers around the world in only a few years. This number was even more than the sold copies of Windows 95. For this reason, Bill Gates had thought of buying the game's production company, but later built an additional software in the operating system to adapt the game to Windows 95 with a team he created within Microsoft under the leadership of Gabe Newell. However, the real success of the game came in 1997 with a special version named Marine Doom. This game, specially developed for the United States Army, was never part of military training as a formal simulation but Marine Commander of the time General Charles C. Krulak argued that video games were an effective way to be considered a military thinking and decision-making exercise. Even though the effects of video games did not lead to a complete learning or comprehension, they were helping this process. In 2005, a battle training simulation was produced by Destineer Studios for the training of the military team of shooters, later on to be launched into the market as Close Combat: First to Fight.
The other game that was released to the market in December of 1993 was the action Cannon Fodder designed by Jon Hare and programmed by Jools Janeson of Sensible Software. The game had a very different point of view compared to its contemporary Doom. The box depicted a red weasel that resembled a bullet wound and actually had a cartridge bullet in the middle. The subject of Cannon Fodder was the destruction created by four player-driven soldiers entering the enemy base in the name of freedom, contained many anti-war elements. For example, the lyrics of the reggae-style song composed for the game were quite ironic. The next song was an absurd clip, just as if it had come out of Boris Vian's Slaughter for Everyone.
War! Never been so much fun!
War! Never been so much fuuuun!
Go to your brother
Kill him with your gun
Leave him dying in his uniform
Dying in the sun
War! Never been so much fun!
Gabe Newell's Valve Software launched in 1999 a battle game played, just like Doom, through the character's eyes. The game with a science-fiction atmosphere told the story of what happened to Gordon Freeman, a physics theorist graduate of MIT , after the research he was part of in a fictional research facility in New Mexico went bad. Shortly after the Half-Life launch, the gameplay dynamics and the, for its period, high quality graphics gained important ground in the game world. But the real success of the game was the story and the way it told this story on such a structure. The main characters had detailed life stories similar to a novel and as the game progressed, the players witnessed through these characters what went on in the secret Black Mesa facility. Such an experience created a trait beyond its time, liberating the game from the ordinary and turning it into an interactive narrative by itself. On the other hand, the screenwriters had masterfully arranged the event pattern. While the hero of the game, Freeman, did not say a single word throughout the script, the side characters became the determinants of what they were doing and in fact the player was being prepared for the narrative to be conveyed. The most important side character amongst them was G-Man , with his blue suit, white shirt, red tie and a briefcase he held in his hand who obviously was working for the state. At the end of the game, this character confronted the player and offered to work for some of his "customers". If the proposal was accepted, the game ended with a letter stating that our character was waiting outside the space time for the next task; but if the offer was rejected, G-Man beamed Freeman into the middle of a war that he would never win. This bizarre-looking man, about whose identity the production company never gave any information during or after the game, was later found by players to actually confront the hero in many instances in the story. While Freeman was attempting to escape from Black Mesa after the accident, G-Man was negotiating with people a little beyond the map or in a house window, on a road paassing by in a vehicle, even on planets of other dimensions of extraterrestrial life moving at a speed against the laws of physic and watching the hero. When looked at it from this point of view, it turned out that the character following Freeman throughout the whole game actually had prepared him for something from the start and by appearing at the right place at the right time, made him part of a script that he had fictionalized.
The G-Man character had come to have such an important role in the script of the game that he turned into a secret waiting to be unraveled in the culture created by Half-Life, and many different theories had been suggested about who he really was. This, of course was largely due to the success of the game's narrative and the fact that the characters were as realistic as the story arc. His devotion to power, his changing the system for his own purposes, his using the people and creatures around him withut their knowledge, basically him trying to survive by only serving his own interests are the ideal characteristics that the economy man tries to possess as he transforms into a wolf. He is both a slave to power and its master within his own borders. More precisely, he accepted to enter the command of his mysterious customers in order to be the god of the area of his reach. He does not have any weapons directly, but it is as if all the weapons entered his service. The player starts to play with the awareness that this is a game, but the G-Man goes beyond the perception range of the player and creates a game in the game. The Frankenstein monster of the man in the navy blue suit is Freeman, whom he has turned into the desperate guinea pig of his own experiments by dragging him step by step into obligation from the beginning of the game, destroying his free will. At the end of the game when G-Man asks the character to work for him, control passes to the player again. But at this exact point as the player grasps everything, even though he feels deceived it is more or less certain which choice he will make. Because of this trick that the game has made at the end of the game the player's mind is irritated, first letting him - even directing him to - identify himself with the hero and drawing it to the third and deepest layer of his designed trap, then stunning him through this empathy. The sequel to the game in 2004 starts in such a desperate atmosphere that G-Man is now playing his cards more openly. However, in some places of his opening speach, he hesitates. There are still things he hides, plans he hasn't realized yet.
“Rise and shine, Mister Freeman. Rise and... shine. Not that I... wish to imply you have been sleeping on the job. No one is more deserving of a rest, and all the effort in the world would have gone to waste until... well, let's just say your hour has... come again.
The right man in the wrong place can make all the difference in the world. So, wake up, Mister Freeman. Wake up and... smell the ashes...”
As off the beginning of the 21st century, it was realized that games were a medium for storytelling and other games which moved through the story, influenced the the player through atmosphere and reality that was created, started emerging. Some of them were so skillfully scripted that they were adapted to movies without touching the general structure. However, the structure of the cinema based on static transfer and not possessing different possibilities could not convey the inner dynamism of a progressive electoral whole as the criterial decision method of the games and the adaptations of the films of the games could never be effective at the same level even on a person who had never played before. Nevertheless, the games have enabled us to question the important concept of understanding the changing perception structure of our time and defining what reality is: hyperreality.
Alea Iacta Est
Today's world has become a place where the boundaries of reality and fiction are now beginning to separate with a fine line. Unfortunately, contemporary economic's theory that the person with rational and complete knowledge will exist in all homogeneous societies is not valid. For this reason, people who differ in their level of knowledge based on many different reasons (age, geography, cultural background, gender, etc.) are open to ideological exploitation for these reasons; the one with the informational superiority can easily exploit the one with the insufficiency. Moreover, if a person with insufficient knowledge suffers a similar complience as that of a caveman who does not know how lightning forms and assigns a superior meaning to it, he can accept the superiority of the other and lose the chance of becoming aware of the exploitation. The power of the media, which is the easiest area of this kind of exploitation today, is the control of the perception of reality.
Control creates a great dilemma for a state. This concept can be thought of as the primary means by which the state can function in a systematic manner. The criminal system for example could in established communities provide for crime to be prevented before it occurres as a significant reason for deterrence. However, when it is supported by justice in the long run, this system will begin to lose its necessity or even completely disappear in the ideal society model.
On the other hand, the state also wants to protect its legitimacy by taking control of things that might be against it. But the desire of a state to control thought, free will for this reason makes it a repressive element. Whereas the opposition creates the basic dynamics that enable the democratic system to sustain itself by expressing dissatisfaction and bringing forward solutions to the problems it believes to exist.
Democracy in its principle of function, allows the government to coexist with the opposition. Otherwise, the rule of one opinion will emerge, the governing bodies will move away from criticality and eventually there will be a state of tyranny unimportant of which view it is. The opposition has therefore always undertaken the task of ensuring social balance by supervising, warning and, if necessary, standing against the government. Two of the most important philosophers of the 20th century, Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari, in the second episode of Capitalism and Schizophrenia, A thousand Plateaus, define the phenomenon of the state in established communities in terms of control in the following way:
“Either it uses police officers and jailers in place of warriors, has no arms and no need of them, operates by immediate, magical capture, "seizes" and "binds," preventing all combat or, the State acquires an army, but in a way that presupposes a juridical integration of war and the organization of a military function.”
Nowadays, state structuring has experienced three major traumas of the process of differentiating perceptions during and after the sovereignty of the economic systems and the aftermath of the transition to settled life, and has often wrapped its bloody hands on the throat of the society in order to retain the structure it built however askew. The information gap created around the world, the efforts to steer it at an advanced level, and the ideal of uniformity have been tried in different forms in different periods of history, and have laid the groundwork for the states to be able to utilize power by themselves independently from the society. The main reason why the extreme nationalist and fascist views rising during the Second World War are rebounding nowadays can be summarized by the lack of information and the destroyed local culture. Here, culture should be considered as a whole with subcultures, historical past, traditions, ethics, beliefs, intellectual and artistic creations, etc.
On the other hand, despite the technological improvements to facilitate access to information, it is necessary to have knowledge in this regard in order to be able to decide which information is correct and which is wrong. This can be referred to as a wormhole because in order to acheve knowledge, knowledge needs to be achieved. And afterall, this is the state's that desires control, greatest leverage in our day.
In that case, what should this system in which it is difficult to achieve truth and knowledge, considered as? This frame which is designed as a reality, which harbours obstacles in itself and is able to change its approach and method for a certain purpose according to the structure of the society, intervenes in the perception of the society, and therefore of the individual. In other words, this phenomenon, just like a video game, with its own adaptation mechanism, utilizing technology and human psychology to create a virtual sense of reality, is a new layer of reality that claims to be a secondary and more realistic reality on reality.
This hyperreality creates a hideout area similar to what the iconoclasts actually do when they crush icons into pieces, rather than the idea that these images which are actually sanctified, go beyond the sacred, and hide that they are not in fact in any way sacred. According to Baudrillard, this hyperreality simulation is the simulacrum of the hyperreality domain, and the mediators that manipulate it are the simulators.
“It is the generation by models of a real without origin or reality: a hyperreal. (...) It is the real, and not the map, whose vestiges subsist here and there, in the deserts which are no longer those of the Empire, but our own. The desert of the real itself.
In fact, even inverted, the fable is useless. Perhaps only the allegory of the Empire remains. For it is with the same Imperialism that present-day simulators try to make the real, all the real, coincide with their simulation models.”
However, despite the efforts to control, to keep ignorant, keep indifferent societies ripe to reactions started by intellectuals and educated people, or those who resist by not acknowledging the pressures that disturb by only being present. Because if dissatisfaction is not remedied or if not tried to be remedied, it will somehow lead to opposition.
The year 2013 was the scene of such a protest for Turkey. A group of people who heard that work on the Topçu Barracks Project, that was willed to be built in Taksim Gezi Park, would start by cutting trees, wanted to wait in the park in the last days of May and prevent the cutting of trees. On the evening of May 27, the group of about 50 people who came to the park could not prevent the uprooting of five trees but that night they stood guard by pitching tents in the park. Later the group was surrounded by security forces. The demonstrators, who did not take any action except to sit in the park, were confronted with a control mechanism, with state authority. The next day passed quietly. The crowd that gathered in the park continued their protest under the blockade of crowded security forces. There were even those who read books to the policemen in their uniforms, protective gear, shields, helmets and canes who stood ready to move at a moment's notice.
At the end of two days, on the morning of May 29, the protest was interfered with disproportionate force; the tents were removed. Then the demolition work resumed. That is the moment when everything started, the protest received attention from a wide range of maasses, from NGOs to political parties and different sections of the society. The protest, which started in Gezi Park, turned into an expression of general dissatisfaction, the dice were cast. The same night, the park began to host more protestors. Demolition stopped once more. But the next day security forces intervened in the park once more. This one was even more violent than the one before. Nonetheless, participation continued to increase. Particularly young people participated intensively in the protest, but there were people from all walks of life and different age groups in the park.
On May 31, the Istanbul 6th Administrative Court adopted a stay of execution and refused the construction of the Topçu Barracks in Taksim Gezi Park. The protest was successful, construction had stopped. However, the protests were not limited to this. Because the issue was no longer the barracks to be built in Gezi Park. It was the belief that the country was governed by an outdated mindset that preferred concrete over wood, repressive control over education, uniformity over free thinking and the reaction against it had come to a state where it could no longer be suppressed. The events in Gezi Park were the moment the chains broke loose and the trees that wanted to be removed from there had become the symbol of resistance. Because as Camus, one of the most important thinkers of existentialism, had stated, deep emotions as big works were always more meaningful than they were consciously conveying. This important message of the people was perceived by the government as a threat rather than a quest for a right. For this reason, the ruling party targeted an undeniable segment of the society, mainly the main opposition party, and these people who were using their democratic protest rights were accused of treason, detained, and questioned.
On 1 June, the protests continued and police stopped demonstrators in Besiktas with TOMA's  and gas capsules. Later, whith the main opposition party leader's request and within the knowledge of the prime minister at the time the security forces were withdrawn and the protestors proceeded to Taksim Square for the rally to be held. At the same time protests were held in many cities of the country. The demonstrations in Gezi Park continued for a while in and around the park. Barricades were built near the park and on the roads to Taksim Square; in this area though everyone was in solidarity as much as possible. Medication and first-aid equipment were provided for victims of the intervention, those affected by pepper spray, and food for the hungry. There were those who sent pies they baked at home with the youngsters of the neighborhood because they could not come to the park themselves and also those who after working office hours rushed to Taksim at night. There was also a library in the park. Everyone donated books and anyone could take and read any book they wanted. The streets filled with colorful graffiti and slogans. Despite the bans most often brought to social media, people in the park, on the streets, in the houses, on mobile phones, computers and smart devices somehow published protest-oriented shares and performed through civilian correspondence what the media couldn't. There were also those supported the protests by turning their lights on and off in their homes every evening, making noise with pots and pans, stopping their cars in the middle of the road and tooting their horns. The park had begun to become in just a few days a small utopia of thousands of people from different political or religious views, different ethnic backgrounds, different educational levels, different sexual identities, and that despite the police helicopters constantly passing overhead, police officers with tear gas waiting around every corner and TOMA blockades. In the 80s, when people were shooting each other in the middle of a street in political events, right and left-wing groups were now shouting slogans together. No one was excluded because of their sexual identity, or their ethnicity. The monument of this utopia was the Atatürk Cultural Center which had been evacuated in 2008 for renovation purposes but later nothing was renovated. The front of the building was filled with the banners of political groups, NGO's and football supporter groups participating in the protest.
However, on the evening of June 15, the demonstrators in the park were evacuated by the violent intervention of the security forces, the tents were removed, the library was demolished, the park and the square were closed. That night, countless gas canisters and tons of water were used against the protesters. The security forces had cleansed Taksim and its surroundings from the people and put it under "security". In the following days the protests spread to different parts of the city. On the streets, protesters and police came face to face many times. While all this was happening, there was not much news except the news of the group that set up tents in the park in the first days in the mainstream media unlike the world press. Already, the perception policy that was carried out from the first day was also in this direction. Initially the protests were tried to be shown as insignificant but after the situation became impossible to be covered up, the attitude of the government became tough enough to confront one part of the people with the other. This was in fact sufficient to justify the reasons underlying the protests. Therefore, the Gezi Park Protests became a social movement of a likeness never seen before in political history of the country.
The summer of 2013 in the name of Turkey's political history, beared witness to all that has been described since the beginning of this article; how changing human tendencies, the binding structure of the state and the control phenomenon, the effectiveness of social movements, the differentiated narrative deflecting information and simulation try to direct perception. All that remained was the evidence of gas canisters, tear gas, TOMA's, injured or dead people as a result of the disproportianate violence adopted against the protesters, arrests over social media shares, people losing their jobs, artist trying to be disreputated, doctors who adhered to their Hippocratic oaths and intervened to the needy being removed from office, even what clergymen experienced facing exile because they denied allegations of the mainstream media that protestors had consumed alcohol in a mosque, the history of how a protest that started out in the form of civil disobedience, shook a political power that suffocated people and under what circumstances a society can come together. The protests that started in Taksim Gezi Park were the most tangible evidence that the the generation of '68 did not fail, that against all efforts a society cannot be completely apolitizied and that Newton's Third Law of Motion also applied on communities.
The End of the Game
Transmission processes, of course, turned into the most important storytelling channel of our day under the guidance of the media through structures open to inducement. Whereas art, with the function of representing it took on for ages, has reflected the enlightenment it has emerged from and is still continuing to reflect. The artist, not smashed under the claw of a certain ideology - which is one of the most criticized aspects of contemporary art - kneaded with an art perception that has a critical view in itself, naturally will not stop from expressing his/her social sensitivity. Tülin Onat had exactly such a sensitivity when preparing this exhibition. The artist who was exposed to intense tear gas during the Gezi Park protests in 2013, still has a recurrent wound in her trachea. For this reason, the stories of those who were injured and lost their lives during the protests affected her more deeply.
Onat actually wanted to work on the Gezi Park protests for a long time, but she was waiting for the right time to come and to get rid of the mental and physical residues of 2013. Since I met her, she has not been watching television for a long time and read the news not from the newspapers, but from the internet pages she followed. "I got tired of the competition programs on the TVs," she said. "They just keep us entertained." Because she was aware that there was something in the background; social oppression and anxiety grew day by day and she could not focus on anything other than that. While once she enthusiastically kept on doing what she loved most, staying up all night in her studio even forgetting to eat from time to time, the source of her insomnia and forgetting to eat was her deep concern in the heart, especially after the 15th of July coup attempt. Although she continued to search for the exit in art, painting, canvas, and painting, as she did winning over each obstacle in her life, everytime I went to visit her in her studio, I could realize that the smile was getting more and more wiped off her face like someone who could not get a taste from anything they ate. Our converstations were anyways not about art but more about worry, desparation and the sediment that kept on accumulating in her. One day, even before she created these peices, she said that even the city she lived in had changed so much both architecturally and culturally that it became unrecognizable. She was aware of the sediments accumulating in her but believed that this period beginning from the Gezi Park Protest, an important milestone for her as well as many others, would prepare the correct ground for what she was going to tell. Excitedly she said "I can not keep these things in me; if I do not paint these paintings, I could die. " Her face that lit up was buried back in the dark at the same instance.
This sentence of hers went around in my mind. Even though I knew what an emotional person she was, it was a heavy sentence even for her. Tülin Onat's art is based on a spiritual basis. Every painting, every piece, every layer on the canvas has a counterpart in her life. The color of distress is different from happiness, the color of the color of sadness is far from hope, the color of wisdom, the color of enlightenment, the air, the water, nature always drip through Onat's soul's filter with their own characters onto the canvas. Some might think of it as a romance behind times but art, having created an imaginary sky while cruising at romanticisim's manic edges will fall into her painting like a star. Therefore whenever she starts a new piece or reads a sentence she wrote off the notebook she always carries with her, everything is actually already complete and she somehow reflects this excitement onto you. But for the first time since we met, I have been seeing her so full and heavy. But I was also aware that this was a good sign. Because she was not the kind of person to accept a defeat at any moment in life and she absolutely would respond; I could feel it.
So I was quietly focused on my own work, concsious of her waiting for the right time to reveal her artistic creations as she always did, I continued my daily life and we did not communicate for a while. But only a few days later she phoned around lunchtime and said she wanted to talk to me. Her voice was excited again, like that day. Soon I went to her studio. She already had started to work.
I could not hide my astonishment when she showed me the first pieces of the series. The large canvases that had barely found their necessary spaces even in the massive exhibition hall of the National Gallery in Albania were gone, a few small canvases had replaced them. My astonishment must have reflected on my face for before I could ask nything she said to me "As I stifled, the canvases stifled,"; "Like all of us, my paintings are trapped in tiny spaces.". On the other hand, these new pieces - not taking into account counting a few pieces that look like her figurative output years - did not at all look like her previous works. This time she created collages and all of these collages came out of photographs she had taken herself, each of which was a separate story in its own. Then she told me to wait and came back with a rag doll in her hand. While working on the exhibition, one night she had sewn this doll that had a female face on one side and a male on the other. Then she pointed to a girl in a yellow dress on a canvas and said she also was a doll; a friend of hers had found it in a toyshop in Berlin and bought it. When she had added the photograph of her daughter Ekin to these two dolls the three dolls had created three sizes, three different extensions of the view. She was questioning the fictional, the hyperreality and the reality through these three images as an artist, a woman and a mother. She had witnessed important events in Turkey's recent history, but this time around, the Gezi Park protests were like none other. In other periods she had created illusions through depth and space, always played with light and shadow, creating an impossible three-dimensional space on the canvas. Now she added a concrete plane of meaning to it, and for the first time, was beginning to describe her ideas, utopias and dystopias with such a chaotic lucidity. This situation, after I pulled away from my momentary astonishment, encouraged me.
At each of our meetings on the next days she told me about the testimonies that would come to life in her works. How she became excited when she saw the front facade of the AKM decorated with banners during the Gezi process and how that moment became deeply engraved in her, how she followed the protests night after night on social media lacking sleep, how she felt like dying when she inhaled the gas that caused the wound in her throat, the great hope in her, that big yearning she felt for democracy and justice. Onat, in front of my eyes was taking out her entrapped projections from Frankenstein's monster that was created by the askew perception under the guidance of the authorities, which stuck like a sickening illness to the society she was living in, she was challenging everything, the perception distorted with her testimony's power, the suppression of the right to live. Everything that Tülin Onat had been accumulating inside of her since the Gezi protests were emerging at exactly the right time. The chain had been broken, the game was now over.
This exhibition is a milestone in which Tülin Onat's testimony meets with its audience directly and at the same time one of the most important political events of the recent period is processed with artistic sensitivity. In this way each piece, as much as they are within themselves singular documents of an important moment born from their combination with the images of the artist's memory, becomes a part of a social memory with different colors, different figures and different spaces similar to the protesters in Gezi Park, allowing a different reading when supervened back to back. The artist creates not only an individual but also a societal breathing space at the distinction of this important path of her personal history and then presents the audience through the canvas how this area gradually wanes and how it becomes increasingly difficult to breathe. Thus, the image breaks the usual perception and reflects the viewer's being caught in a trap, helplessness and rush back to the viewer. The artist uses art there like a Pandora's box to show that there is still hope. Because this is the most effective way to take a stand against an order that shows death to persuade for anguish.
- Urban people – economic people – Man is wolf to man (translated from Latin)
- Platon (1999), Republic, Türkiye İş Bankası Kültür Yayınları (First print Remzi Kitabevi, 1962), p. 297
- A. Smith (2011), The Wealth of Nations, Palme Yayıncılık p. 30
- K. Marx (2003), Capital, Volume I, Eriş Yayınları (First print Sol Yayınları, 1975), p. 139
- From J. Goebbels’s Nazi Party speach on 9 January 1928 in the Berlin Hochschule für Politik.
- T. More (2000), Utopia, Kaynak Yayınları, p. 106
- That which is of gold, the Golden King, the Golden Man. A myth by the colonial Spain, that a Golden Empire is formed around the lake through the mystical chief of the Colombian Muysca tribe covering himself in gold dust and entering the Guatavita Lake.
- Legend of a Fountain of Eternal Youth that granted eternal youth to whomever drank of its water, mentioned in the writings of Herodotus in the 5th century B.C. and that Juan Ponce de León, who was appointed by the Kingdom of Spain in the 16th century as the first administrator of Puerto Rico, pursued.
- We must cultivate our own soil
- A. Huxley (2002), Brave New World, İthaki Yayınları, p. 141
- H Allan (2008), Cult Films: Taboo and Transgression, University Press of America, p. 10
- From Dr. Mabuse’s monologue. F. Lang (1933), The Testament of Dr. Mabuse
- Blade Runner (1982), Brazil (1985), Batman Returns (1992), The Crow (1994), Dark City (1998), I, Robot (2004), Sin City (2005) and The Dark Knight (2008) can be shown as examples of these director’s in the genre.
- Meaning dark room in Latin and a system where the light reflected through a pinhole on the opposite wall creates the image in reverse. This structure that works on a principle similar to the interior of the eye that forms the image is also found in modern photographic machines.
- From R.Capa’s statement on war correspondance. Martin W. Bowman (2013), Air War D-Day: Bloody Beaches Vol. 4, Pen and Sword, p. 71
- Jean-Paul Sartre (1981), Nausea, Can Yayınları, p. 174
- The Manhattan Project: Nazi Germany's nuclear weapons development project, which began in the United States during the Roosevelt period against production, involved research, production, experimentation and information gathering on such weapons between 1942 and 1947.
- M. Merleau-Ponty (1945), Phénoménologie de la Perception, Editions Galimard, p. 220-221
- S. Žižek’s article with subject Lessons From the “Airpocalypse” on the website www.inthesetimes.com.
- R. Freeman (1990), The Beatles, A Private View, Barnes & Noble, p. 176
- E. Durkheim (1984), The Division of Labour in Society, The Macmillan Press, p. 38-39
- Chorus of Alice Cooper’s Feed My Frankenstein song from the 1991 Hey Stoopid album.
- In J. Cooper and G. Cooper's 2002 issue of "The Subconscious Motivation: Reconsideration," article published in Applied Social Psychology Newspaper, in an episode of The Simpsons, frames that spelled the word "thirsty" or with a can of Coca-Cola were added in excess and that they were observing that this was effective in making the viewers feel thirsty. This technique is also known as the 25th frame technique.
- Carmack who also owns a company named Armadillo Airspace is at the same time a Space Engineer. He continues his work or artifical reality.
- Newell later realized the importance of this industry, left Microsoft and established Valve Software in 1996. This company soon became one of the world's most important game companies and then became the biggest company in this area by establishing the online game platform Steam.
- Lyrics composed for the game Cannon Fodder.
- Massachusetts Institute of Technology
- The character’s name comes from the definition of government man.
- Please read foot note number 37 under the following subheader. Thus, by giving a footnote to the future, this book is also distorting the chain of perception of the reader.
- From G-Man’s opening speach in Half-Life 2 that was launched in 2004.
- Translated from Latin meaning "The die is cast", it was uttered by Julius Caesar as he crossed the Rubicon river near Roma, meaning events are passed the point of no return. In the year 49 B.C. Caesar, defied the senate and walked on Rome with his legions.
- G. Deleuze & F. Guattari (1990), Capitalism and Schizophrenia: A Thousand Plateaus, Bağlam Yayınları, p. 25
- J. Baudrillard (1998), Simulacra and Simulation, Dokuz Eylül Yayınları, s. 13-14
- A.Camus (1997) The Myth of Sisyphus, Can Yayınları, p. 22
- A 5 ton-weight armored vehicle used by the security forces, named after the initials of the Vehicle For Intervening In Societal Events, and with a strong ball on top throwing pressurized water.
- In Sir Isaac Newton’s book Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica (Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy) published in July 5, 1687 the Third Law of Motion is as follows: When one body exerts a force on a second body, the second body simultaneously exerts a force equal in magnitude and opposite in direction on the first body.