Drawing on the photographic archive of Maryam Sahinyan (1911-1996) and Osep Minasoglu (1929-2013), Armenian photographers who lived in Istanbul at the time, the installation materializes an extinct space. The wall in the virtual studio that exhibits Sahinyan’s photos is transformed into a documentation of the raids and their aftermath in the physical space; by overlapping the layouts of the two spaces the project experiments with the transition from a virtual to physical experience.
September 1955 is a 8-minute virtual-reality documentary of the Istanbul Pogrom, a government-initiated organized attack on the minorities of Istanbul on September6-7, 1955. This interactive installation places the viewer in a reconstructed photography studio in the midst of the pogrom, allowing one to witness the events from the perspective of a local shop-owner.
The experience of the space induced by participating in the mundane activities of the photography studio aims to generate unique historical narratives that are reproduced and enacted by the viewer.