Mono-vacation, Istanbul Modern

“Please do not disturb”
VitrA Contemporary Architecture Series Presents

Istanbul Modern, February 7th – April 7th 2013

Curator: Ertuğ Uçar
Coordinator: Pelin Derviş
Artists: Burak Arikan, Kerem Ozan Bayraktar, Nermin Er, Meriç Kara, Metehan Özcan

burak-arikan-monovacation-installation

Mono-vacation

Mono-vacation cordially invites you to “the vacation” of vacations… The official tourism commercials of countries in competition with each other have been selected and each film has been divided into the possible tiniest clips. The clips, 3-4 sec long by nature have been coded with tags. Through a network diagram which run as a software simulation, these tags are connected to each other via shared clips have found their positions on the map. Then, a new sequence have been generated through a traversal in the network map, jumping from one node to the closest, following the path of the most central tags. Shores from Egypt to Portugal, woman from Israel to India, mythological figures from Thailand to Turkey here comes an extracted fantasy of “vacation”… text continues below

It is a three part installation:

Projection: Official tourism commercials of countries which are competitors of each other (excerpt)

Digital Print: Network map of representation similarity generated by the content analysis of the tourism commercials (blue nodes represents the traversal paths used for editing the new film)

Monovacation Network Diagram

Video: Generic film reedited with network analysis. (excerpt)

Monovacation


Zeynep Gökay Üstün

Monovacation cordially invites you to “the vacation” of vacations… The official tourism commercials of countries in competition with each other have been selected and each film has been divided into the possible tiniest clips. The clips, 3-4 sec long by nature have been coded with tags. Through a network diagram, which run as a software simulation, these tags are connected to each other via shared clips and have found their positions on the map. Then, a new sequence have been generated through a traversal in the network map, jumping from one node to the closest, following the path of the most central tags. Shores from Egypt to Portugal, hospitality from Australia to Ukraine, nature from Spain to New Zealand, woman from Israel to India, mythological figures from Thailand to Turkey here comes an extracted fantasy of “vacation”…

Tourism is a vicious sphere of competition in the world economy. This situation forces the countries possessing touristic values to act like corporations. The 2012-2013 Tourism Report of the World Economic Forum evaluates and ranks 144 countries and assumes a position within the global context. The countries in competition take the pulse of each other and use every trick in the book to impress the visitors; huge investments, airport constructions, chain hotels, loyalty programs, business world, and many other attractions as such. Turkey, in this context is one of the countries that attract tourists. Among its competitors there are countries such as France, Spain, Italy, Cyprus, Greece, Malta, Egypt, Portugal, Yugoslavia, Morocco, Thailand, China, UAE, Taiwan and India. 144 countries trying to captivate the tourists and ruthless competition… Monovacation uses 20 official tourism TV commercials randomly selected out of these 144 countries as its material.

The image appears in the commercial videos of the countries with tourism value. Each film hails another subjectivity, from place to place employs the same imagery and from time to time idiosyncratic elements. The representative images in visuals do not only show the countries assets also builds an ideal understanding of vacation for the subjects. While they are defining a subjective position for the tourist, they also point to all sorts of “should’s” from how and with whom we should have fun, how we should rest, to which view or historical structure we should admire. While the efforts to shape the vacation through the subjectivity of the tourist render these movies almost the same, the trademark geographical and cultural values seem to be wrapped up and marketed. The countries are being stripped off all other qualities and are being brought to a common ground. These commercials, which usually last one to three minutes summarize the countries real quick and try to catch attention and on the other hand give a promise to satisfy all the vacation needs of the tourist, so they collaboratively construct a fantasy of vacation.

Splitting these commercial films into the tiniest pieces and having another gaze at each separated clip channels us into a much convenient path than breaking the routine, instead it reinforces the routine and make it much apparent. Thus, positioning the tags post-coded and attached to each clip in a network map enables one to read this construct of vacation. Yet above all, such a map allows one to discover the most central concepts and representations and to invent a generic vacation commercial. A fantasy which overrules other fantasies of travelling, a fantasy where the steps of discovering a new place are predetermined and a fantasy where the patterns are being reproduced… Monovacation, this construct that we know is generic, forms an extracted fantasy of travelling not to the countries but to the travel itself.

In this context Monovacation is a work composed of three pieces: (1) Official tourism commercials of Turkey and its competitors on a grid, (2) Network map of representation similarity generated by the content analysis of the tourism commercials, (3) Generic film reedited with network analysis.

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