Time & Location
About the Event
Baris Gokturk’s All Saints (2021) is a monument to the energetic release of street dancing in a time when the stakes of bodies in the street may never have felt higher. Composed of collaged images of dancers from 2020 block parties around New York City, the Turkish-born artist’s home for the past twenty years, the piece is dense with figures in motion. Some are masked and some are unmasked, all are impossibly close together, even overlapping. When was the last time we were close together like that? In the summer of 2020, when New York was the global epicenter of Covid-19, in spite of the threat of contagion, in spite of fears of overwhelming the healthcare system, of infecting and possibly killing loved ones or neighbors, in spite of all this people took their single, precious, vulnerable bodies into the streets and brought them dangerously near to other bodies in protest because the inequity of death was intolerable. If Breonna Taylor could be shot in her bed by invading police, if Ahmaud Arbery could be run down, if a police officer could kneel for nine minutes on George Floyd’s neck as he begged for air, death – and those who wield death in the name of the state – had to be confronted in the street.
At twenty-eight feet in length, All Saints is simultaneously a barricade and a fragile veil. Strips of color composed of image transfers, ink, acrylic, pills of paper pulp and other debris are woven into an industrial netting and hoisted into the air where they buckle and sag. The size is imposing, but the tattered image is also thin, nearly transparent in places, like a broken panel of stained glass in a cathedral. Amidst the dancers, fireflies float like embers. As in Gokturk’s Fires_Riot series, which tracks moments of social combustion at protests from Gezi to Baltimore, All Saints poses the political challenge of bodies gathered in public space. Like the blossoming fireworks that marked the summer of 2020 in urban spaces across America, these works ambiguously signal violence, resistance, or festivity.
ELM Foundation is pleased to present Baris Gokturk and his monumental work ALL SAINTS.
As our guest artist, Baris was invited to utilize the vast industrial space of The Boiler as a working studio with the end goal of producing a public exhibition. Gokturk has far exceeded this aim by using images and text gathered from public dance to build a substrate that engulfs you in size and color spectrum. An intense juxtaposition of vitality and decay is felt in his new work, representing a dancing group as a political body in layers of image transfer and paint weaved together in sculpture.
Please join us for the opening of ALL SAINTS. And the kick off to ELM Foundations's Spring Programming "Moving Through the Pandimic"
Open Gallery 12:00-3:00pm
Family programming 3:00-6:00pm
Opening reception 7:00pm
Come enjoy food, drink and dance!
Mid Day Open GalleryThe Boiler @ ELM Foundation
Family "Block Party"ELM Foundation