Memories of a childhood about a landscape that no longer exists in the way it once was remembered leave one with emptiness. A “rootless” state embraces the identity.
An obsession begins to surrender. An image that frames the landscape becomes the background for the unimaginable.
Zendegi consists of images about the untenable in the landscape of a country that has not seen a day of rest since forty years ago. It’s an attempt to paint a portrait of the geography and its forgotten people in moments of their daily lives that nonetheless continue despite their struggles. These are the evidence of their peaceful existence, as they are the photographs of the emptiness that has sideby side existed by the reality of war.
Emine Gozde Sevim was born in Istanbul, Turkey, in 1985. In 2001, she earned a scholarship to continue her education in the United States. She received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Bard College (NY) in 2008, where she studied with Gilles Peress, Stephen Shore, Barbara Ess, John Pilson and An-My Lê. Since 2007, Sevim embarked on creating an “apolitical” Middle-Eastern visual narrative in the context of post-9/11 era. Her maternal family had left Kabul, Afghanistan in 1975, where Sevim returned to visit with her Afghan grandfather in 2007, following the U.S. invasion. Since then, Sevim has worked in Palestine, in Turkey, and in Egypt as continuation of a comprehensive project about “The Believers”, those who survive a “life-in-passing” in contested geographies. In an attempt to expand beyond the religio-political descriptions of life in the region, Sevim’s narrative embraces notions of human realities in the context of current historical transitions.
She is based in Brooklyn and currently divides her time between New York and the Middle East.
Artist’s Website: http://www.eminegozdesevim.com/