Rana Kelleci, graduate program 2020 alumni of the Visual Arts and Visual Communication Design Program of Sabancı University, took her place in the 38th Contemporary Artists Prize Exhibition organized by the Painting and Architecture Museums Association and Akbank Sanat Akbank to support new developments in contemporary art and young artists.
Rana Kelleci managed to become one of 16 artists whose works were dispayed in Akbank Sanat’s 38th Contemporary Artists Prize Exhibition among approximately one thousand applications. You can read our interview with Rana Kelleci below.
Hello, and first of all, congratulations. Could you tell us a little bit about yourself? What are you doing right now?
R.K: In terms of arts, I work with different disciplines such as photography, drawing, and performance. Recently, my interest is the question of how information and images are produced. Additionally, I have a writing practice. I write and translate for various publications, mainly in the field of art.
How did you decide to study in the Master's Program at the Visual Arts and Visual Communication Design at Sabancı University?
R.K: My master’s process was quite liberating, giving me the opportunity to experiment as I wish. I chose this program because it has a structure that is not divided into disciplines such as painting and photography and allows you to move between different media, thinking that it would provide the flexibility I needed. Especially since I come from a department other than art in my undergraduate studies, such a space of freedom and support was very valuable in the journey of finding my own voice.
How did you participate in Akbank Sanat 38th Contemporary Artists Competition? Which work of yours did you submit for the competition? Could you also share your work and evaluation criteria?
R.K: This year’s theme was “on everyday life”. A jury consisting of Ayşe Erkmen, Dejan Kaludjerović, T. Melih Görgün, Gönül Nuhoğlu, and Derya Bigalı evaluated more than one thousand applications submitted this year.
I applied for the competition with a video recording of my performance called Repost.
In this performance, I was copying images uploaded on Instagram with the hashtag #refugees.
Social media both reflects and simultaneously shapes what we think and feel about immigration as a society. I think we have a certain power and therefore a responsibility due to social media over images of immigration, which is a situation that we are not experiencing first-hand. The performance aims to open that responsibility to discussion. I am thinking about a tiny gesture, such as reposting a post, asking if we continue violence in our digital actions, or if we have a chance to turn existing violence, stereotyping, and marginalization into empathy.
What do you suggest to students who are studying or want to study Visual Arts and Visual Communication Design?
R.K: I think I would suggest that they make the most of the opportunities that the school provides and always observe :)