The Other Portrait
All started with a local game jam at the university. The concept was “Minimal”, We wanted to make an adventure game with an eye-tracker and started working around Hindoism and the steps of rnlightenment and turned it into a playable experience. After some time our head of department at game design program “Güven Çatak” approached me and told that there was a call for BUGLab to participate in Contemporary Istanbul’s sub exhibition named “ plug’n ” about New Media & Interactive Art Exhibition. He asked me to attend it with our game with the eye-tracker.
The theme was “Ex-Change”. It was kind of a strange moment and I said “No” lets make a new experience. We came up with different ideas and it was hard to pick where to start.
I remebered one of the courses that I had taken before. “Cyberculture” at some point we started to talk about Marshall McLuhan and the new media theories. “Medium being the message”,“Global Villages”. “Rhziomes”. “Connection” and “Ex-Change”.
Thus these Ideas were floating and dug deeper for a more primitive start.
Why we invented “Wheel” ? As an extension of our feet that takes us further.
Why we invented “Computer” ? As an extension for our brain to do hard calculations for us or keep more information that we cant store.
The wheel and the computers were only tools for us but with creation of internet / smartphones / social media. We are now all connected to each other. Virtual bonds just like rhizomes. And our devices are connected to the system with us as well. I use it. You use it. Everybody is using it and thinking that they only share their own moments / photos / memories. The thing is the devices were also sharing those so called our momets as their own to the other connected computers and devices.
We were the inventors. The tools were our extensions. And it has changed.
“Human – Human Interaction” transformed into “Human – Machine Interaction” and now we are in the age where there is “Machine – Machine Interaction”.
We create memories for them to share among other computers. And thus we become the extension.
So I decided to create an interaction between “Machine and Human” where human has the role of being an extension for a machine to make it see through the human eyes.
And called it “The Other Portrait” trying to paint on screen where you look and see for the machine and see ourselves within that experience.
I thought the name was so powerful least within the art world and took the lead of the project. It was a fast and harsh journey to put all the pieces together.
Thanks for the support from Güven Çatak, Bahçesehir University and all the amazing people who believed in me and put a small touch in the creation of this project. It was live at Contemporary Istanbul 2015 and now in St. Petersburg for other eyes to experience it.
And I was so honored to be invited to St. Petersburg to exhibit the project again!
The things that I’ve noticed about the images created in Contemporary Istanbul.
In my words
“Using eyes to draw something is like a child using the pen for the first time. They doodle!”
“People having fine art or design education are using their eyes more preciesly.”
Some results are amazing indeed. I was so impressed.