Scramble for the Past
Video Program

Salt Beyoğlu

January 29 – March 4, 2012

SALT Beyoğlu, Walk-in Cinema

This program of artists’ video works was selected to expand on the ideas and content of the exhibition Scramble for the Past: A Story of Archaeology in the Ottoman Empire, 1753-1914. Several works refer to sites referenced in the exhibition, such as Troy and the Acropolis, or to unknown artifacts, and examine how different communities and cultures respond to historical finds. The videos also explore nation building and tourism through the ownership or replication of famous archaeological sites and the representation of historically renowned locations in film, focusing on the exploitation of these sites by a global commercial industry.

Domestic Tourism II
Maha Maamoun
2008, 62’
Arabic with English subtitles

Maha Maamoun, still from Domestic Tourism II, 2008
Exclusively utilizing scenes from Egyptian films that use the pyramids as backdrop, Domestic Tourism II explores the ways in which these iconic historical monuments are re-appropriated from the “timelessness” of the tourist postcard and re-inscribed into the complex and dynamic political and social narratives of the city.

Eva Stefani
2007, 27’

Eva Stefani, still from Acropolis, 2007
The documentary and realistic character of Eva Stefani’s videos on the social and ordinary reality of modern-day Greece in Acropolis gives way to the editing of found footage of different origin. Produced entirely by cutting and pasting together old x-rated and amateur films bought at flea markets, Acropolis questions collective memory and national identity. With surrealistic mirth, the video compares the monumental body of the Acropolis with the woman’s body through a game of cross-references to cultural pillage, moral expropriation, pornography and history.

Battles of Troy
Krassimir Terziev
2005, 50’
Bulgarian with English subtitles

Krassimir Terziev, still from Battles of Troy, 2005
Battles of Troy is a study on the internal economy of today’s globalized cinema production, seen through the eyes of the lowest unit in the hierarchy: the extras. The focus of this work is the making of the Warner Bros. motion picture Troy (2004) and, more specifically, the secret lives of film extras and the distancing of such a project from its original location and historical detail.

Lost Monument
Stefanos Tsivopoulos
2009, HD cam transferred in QTM, 16:9 Color, 27’

Stefanos Tsivopoulos, still from Lost Monument, 2009
A complex tale about a real statue of US president Henry S. Truman, Tsivopoulos’ film illustrates some of the salient moments in the statue’s life, from erection to repeated attacks made in protest of Greek authorities’ blatant celebration of the Truman Doctrine in the repressive lead-up to the Cold War. After travels through Greece and Turkey where the subject of the sculpture goes unknown, the film closes on the statue’s original setting, the square next to the Acropolis in Athens.

Travel and Journey
Kyungah Ham
2004-2005, 13’

Kyungah Ham, still from Travel and Journey, 2004-2005
Travel and Journey investigates the fantasy of experiencing exotic cultures and cultural hierarchies in tourism by exploring the phenomenon of theme parks in Asia that replicate symbolic monuments and landmarks in Europe and America. The idea of nation building through archaeological ownership is seen from a very different perspective.


Sunday, January 29

Tuesday, January 31

Wednesday, February 1

Tuesday, February 7

Wednesday, February 8

Tuesday, February 14

Thursday, March 1

Friday, March 2

Saturday, March 3

Sunday, March 4
12.00 - 18.00