IdentityLab Sessions

20-21 May 2016

This two-day art event will bring artists and art professionals from Turkey and Sweden, who are interested in identity issues, together in Istanbul. These sessions are organized by maumau art residency (TR) and Verkstad konsthall (SE) and will take place at the Consulate General of Sweden, DEPO and Galata Greek Primary School on May 20th and 21st and provide a platform to talk about the relation between place and identity and its effect on different art practices.

Participating Artists: Fikret Atay, Nancy Atakan, Hera Büyüktaşçıyan, Elmas Deniz, Işıl Eğrikavuk, Katarina Pirak Sikku, Liv Strand, Can Sungu, Lisa Torell, Ferhat Özgür

Curators: Naz Cuguoğlu and Susanne Ewerlöf

*** The program will be in English

More information on IdentityLab Sessions:

Aiming to become a platform for discussion on these issues, the IdentityLab team invites artists and art professionals who represent different perspectives. This will give us the opportunity to talk about their personal experiences of ‘place’, its relation to their identities, and their feeling of belonging to various sites. We will also talk about the position of artists representing different minority groups in both Sweden and Turkey, and the role of the visiting artists addressing ‘place’ in unfamiliar locations.

These questions, which came out of the IdentityLab Project ( were developed and carried out in Sweden and Turkey over the past six months. Through artistic research-based meetings with artists and art professionals and researchers in several locations, the IdentityLab team developed an interest in how the places we live in and/or have (not) visited plays into how we become who we are. In that sense, IdentityLab consists of both real and imaginary travels, including journeys we shared and not shared, and trips we hear about from others. It is also about being, existing wherever you are with both your mind and body, and experiencing a space’s atmosphere, contributing to it, owning it, and seeing your own function within it.

The team behind IdentityLab consists of the artists Liv Strand (SE) and Can Sungu (TR/DE), the curators Naz Cuguoğlu (TR) and Susanne Ewerlöf (SE). We think of IdentityLab as an experimental platform based on research and thought-sharing. We have so far had the chance to address these issues with artists in Stockholm, Jokkmokk, Norrköping (Sweden), Istanbul and Batman (Turkey). It is already clear that everybody has different ways of relating to a space; one’s relation to a site can change over life; an individual’s position in a community plays a part; small towns relate to the individual in another way than a city does; and belonging can come from knowing the social rules that construct a site just as much as knowing people.

The project is formed under the context of Tandem Cultural Managers Exchange Turkey European Union and we are able to do the IdentityLab Sessions with kind support from The Swedish Institute and in close collaboration with the Consulate General of Sweden, DEPO and The Galata Greek Primary School. The team has previously conducted research trips and a public seminar in Sweden and are truly grateful to all people encountered on the way. We were able to host the two-day seminar “Exchanging Notes Part I” in Norrköping through kind support from Iaspis – the Swedish Arts Grants Committee’s International Programme for Visual and Applied Artists.

Please come and join us for IdentityLab Sessions to think, share and address place and identity from your point of view!


May 20th @ the Consulate General of Sweden
11.00-15.00 Subject to Erring: A workshop for artists led by Liv Strand
Participants: Fikret Atay, Nancy Atakan, Hera Büyüktaşçıyan, Elmas Deniz, Işıl Eğrikavuk, Katarina Pirak Sikku, Liv Strand, Can Sungu, Lisa Torell, Ferhat Özgür, Joana Kohen, Hasan Özgür Top, Ceren Saner
*By invitation only

May 20th @ DEPO
19.00 Introduction to the IdentityLab Sessions by Naz Cuguoğlu and Susanne Ewerlöf
19.20 Artist Talk by Katarina Pirak Sikku
20.00 Neighbor Think, performance by Liv Strand
20.30 Performance by Işıl Eğrikavuk
21.00 Outdoor performance Figure 2224 by Lisa Torell

May 21th @ Galata Greek Primary School
14.00 Introduction to IdentityLab Sessions and Galata Greek Primary School
14.30 Can Sungu presents his work Replaying Home and shows an excerpt of the video
15.00-16.15 To Make Place video screening and Q&A
Artists: Lisa Torell, Fikret Atay, Elmas Deniz, Ferhat Özgür, Nancy Atakan
16.15-16.30 Coffee Break
16.30-18.30 Panel discussion
Participants: Hera Büyüktaşçıyan, Ferhat Özgür, Lisa Torell, Can Sungu and Liv Strand

For more information about the artists:
Fikret Atay:
Nancy Atakan:
Hera Büyüktaşçıyan:
Elmas Deniz:
Işıl Eğrikavuk:
Katarina Pirak Sikku
Liv Strand:
Can Sungu:
Lisa Torell:
Ferhat Özgür:

Naz Cuguoğlu is a curator and art writer, based in Istanbul. She is the co-founder of non-profit art initiative “Creative Çukurcuma” and artistic research project “IdentityLab” (SE & TR); member of Proto5533 curator team; and works as program manager at Gallery Zilberman (Istanbul & Berlin). She writes art critique for various online and published art magazines. She took part in CerCCa art residency in Spain. She received her BA in Psychology and MA in Social Psychology at Koç University focusing on cultural studies.

Susanne Ewerlöf (b. 1981) is interested in cultural heritage, identity and the politics of memory which she is currently exploring in the research projects Becoming by Recalling and IdentityLab (TR/SE). She works as a Curator in Stockholm, is the Founding Director of Verkstad konsthall in Norrköping, Sweden and a boardmember of Norrköping Air. She has a MA in Culture and Media Production from Linköping University and has studied Art History and Contemporary Art Curating at Stockholm University.


the Consulate General of Sweden: Istiklal Caddesi 247 (Tünel), Beyoğlu
DEPO: Tütün Deposu Lüleci Hendek Caddesi No. 12 Tophane
Galata Greek Primary School: Hacımimi Mah. Kemeraltı Cad. No. 25

Special thanks to: Suzi Erşahin, Andrea Karlsson, Serra Özhan Yüksel, Sine Ergün, Asena Günal, Serhat Cacekli, Moiz Zilberman, Hera Büyüktaşçıyan, Erik Månsson, Sheena Malone, Damla Kılıçkıran, Ayşegül Papila

More information: