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TRAVELLING_LIGHT _ Turkey_Germany_France_Mexico_Malta _ 2015 - . . .

Travelling Light questions

our vision_metaphor of the cultural identity and emotional bagage of our images,

the weight of their memory.

Here Light has a double meaning,

the presence of light itself,

quintessence of the photographic media, and the absence of lightness in

the physical weight of the resin.

This project is an evolutive set of sculptures,

where photographic archives

are trapped into various

shapes and sizes of resins and

exhibited by objects transformed

into light boxes.

The archives and the objects are connected within the history behind the images.

Encapsulated like organic samples,

these images are ready

to be shipped to their next trip.


Poolbox #1

These photographic archives are taken from a Turkish magazine from the 60s.

The article relates the opening of a public swimming pool in 1966 in the Aegean city Izmir in Turkey;

on this occasion local dancers and actors were invited to perform under water in this new pool.


These archival images are transformed to be re-exhibited in a small cabinet,

that takes form as a portable light box library, the Poolbox#1.

They are bathed and integrated into tablets of resin, tinted with Blue paint,

using a traditional Turkish technique of painting in water, called Ebru

Separated from their text and their context,

we rediscover these images extracted from their editorial layout.
Forgotten in the collective memory, they take on a new format.

[Re]published, they come back to life in the public eye.

Poolbox #1 _

Izmir's pool of fame _ 2021

11 tablets of resin,

20 x 20 x 1 cm each.

Custom made light box briefcase

in Turquoise Plexiglas,

23 x 23 x 29 cm.

[MArchives Collections]   

Photographic archives _

Pool[s] _

HAYAT Magazine 20 October 1966

Def . Ebru


Ebru is the traditional Turkish art of marbling paper which involves creating colourful patterns by applying coloured pigments with a drip or brush on water in a container, in which oily substances

have been added.

Then, the design is transferred onto paper.

Toolbox #1

is like a garage calendar dedicated to a male audience, hence the toolbox,

the female figure is here objectified.

Transformed into a light box,

it reveals a collection of photographic archives

of women in Turkish magazines from the 60s_70s.

Toolbox #1 _ 2018

54 blocks of resin,

6 x 3,5 x 2 cm each.

Ready made toolbox in red and grey

transformed into a light box,

20 x 42 x 20 cm.

[MArchives Collections]   

Photographic archives _

HAYAT Magazines 60s_70s

The Blue Angels of Constantinople

Each resin was created from a cast of a brick dating from the Ottoman Empire,

marked with the city of Constantinople’s symbol.

These resin fossils contain a series of seven photographic archives,

depicting oriental dancers in Turkish restaurants [Gazinos] in the 60s, in Istanbul. 

These Turquoise columns, convertible in light boxes,

allow us to consult this luminous library of images in a new form.

As if trapped in ice, they rise from their stalagmites to project themselves,

to reveal themselves to the viewer.


Frozen in time, vestiges of a collective memory,

the images of these women are preserved from disappearance and oblivion.

These Blue Angels from Constantinople refer to the painted angels in Hagia Sophia in Istanbul,

where the eternal question remains

What’s the angels’s gender?

Die Engel Blauen Constantinopel _

The blue Angels of

Constantinople _ 2016

7 bricks of resin,

22,5 x 10,5 x 6 cm each.

7 columns in Turquoise Plexiglas,

convertible into light box briefcases,

various sizes, maximum height 80 cm.

[MArchives Collections]   

Photographic archives _

Istanbul _ Gazinos 60s

Ice Core Memories

 is the result of an open call for donation of photographic archives

related to the imagery of the Water element. [Sea, swimming pools, bathtub, lake,…]

The participants record their individual memory

by donating their personal archives to the collective memory.

Each of these small blocks of resin contains a photographic archive the size of a photo negative.

Trapped like organic samples in Ice cores, those archives are ready to be shipped to a safe place for conservation.

Ice Core Memories is a time capsule with the mission to conserve and preserve the memories of our civilisation. 

Ice Core Memories _ 2015

60 blocks of resin,

9,5 x 4,5 x 3,5 cm each.

Wooden light box for expedition ,

60 x 60 x 50 cm.

[MArchives Collections]   

Photographic archives _

A_Drop _in_a_Pool _ 2015

 © All rights reserved by Mathilde Melek An, 2013
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