Opening: 8. October 2013, 19h
Duration Exhibiton: 9. Oktober – 14. November 2013

There is a major difference between rooms that we spend time in every day and rooms that we occasionally enter; a room that we go into for the first time is immediately engraved in our memory as a whole, with its light, the atmosphere, the cracks on the walls, the creaks of the floorboards. Perhaps, what we are going to experience in the room is hidden in these details; the room could be a doctor’s office or an office that we are going to enter every day in the future.

Although rooms are by definition claustrophobic, what takes place in these spaces can transform them into liberating spaces. The claustrophobic dining room, the potential of people to become inhuman, the transformation of the daily into the disturbing, all seen in Luis Bunuel’s film El angel exterminador (1962), can be employed to describe the impact of İnci Furni’s painterly repetitions on the viewer. After all, Bunuel’s dining room, which cannot be “exited” and pushes the guests’ boundaries, can be compared to Furni’s objects and stories depicted on white or off-white backgrounds, transforming quotidian experience into a “thing” that is viewed, distanced.

İnci’s “room” paintings are related to the spaces we inhabit that become like limbs to us—unfamiliar spaces diminish, al- ienate us. The imaginary spaces that host the fictional stories of the bed that is seen every day are actually the representa- tions of the psychological, metaphorical states that the artist foregrounds through her personal perception and experience of this sameness.

Same Thing Everyday can be read as an exhibition dominated by deduction. Although each painting exists on its own—in other words, while each is “innocent” by itself—the paintings, exhibited all together, not only break the sterility of the in- stitutional space, but also envelop the viewer in İnci’s fiction. Our desire to approach and walk away from the drawings and canvases of various sizes suggests that this relationship is not, in fact, particularly comfortable. The definitive charac- teristic of these paintings in which the artist is gauging her own pulse is perhaps these ups and downs; the artist disrupts her own story to then imprison this story on various surfaces, thus liberating these moments, these situations. Same Thing Every Day makes permeable the boundaries of the fictional visual world that the artist constructs by repeating objects, quotidian, regular situations.

The point of departure for Same Thing Everyday is İnci’s works on paper.“Parrot Can’t Talk,” a work that the artist realized at Krinzinger Projekte (Vienna), did not fit onto the sheets of paper and extended onto the wall; the works that were absent from the space were represented directly on the wall. Repetition was felt through the difference that perhaps does not exist between the wall and the paper. In Same Thing Everyday, the sheets of paper are sufficient for Furni, the walls are not used. This time, the element of repetition that connects the works is invisible; the repeated elements connect the works to each other. The object that is drawn over and over again points to Furni’s ambivalent relationship with what she does.

All the works that are included in the exhibition are related to each other, they constitute the parts of a “thing.” The variations in the artist’s language bring dynamism to the whole of the exhibition, foregrounding the conceptual connection be- tween the works. Each work is related to the others in a form from which a visual story, a world emerges. This attitude of the works is related to the artworks’ ordering and the instal- lation, which produces a rhythm. The visual content of Same Thing Everyday is not stable. What I mean here is that although the visual cohesion produces a formal language, this language is founded on a general feeling, a state of mind; the objects provide a general [conceptual?] “umbrella” through objects that are at times loosely, at times meticulously, represented. For example, while the single bed is charged with the symbolic meaning of the situation and the temporality in which it is placed, the se- ries of matches [matchboxes?] confront us with the ill-fated destiny of this object of consumption.

“The Single Bed Series (Diary)“, is a work in which Furni clearly shows that she keeps a diary through painting. The artist has been making paintings of this by-now fictional bed since May of 2012; she chose to exhibit the works in groups according to the month in which the paintings were completed. The paint- ings are sometimes abstracted, sometimes realistic, alienat- ing that bed which exists somewhere out there, and show Furni distancing herself from painting and representing her internal world through the same object.

The matches – “Trivial Stuff for Personal Freedom” – con- front the viewer in a similar manner—sometimes in a mess, sometimes in perfect order. The meaning that we charge each painting with not only helps us understand how Furni is expressing herself, but also how we feel at that moment and place. The mirror that Furni obsessively holds up to herself is an interrogation that we are forced to partake in through the visuals and associations. The artist equating the bed—a most private, special ob- ject—with the match, something that we associate with the word “trash” and that we do not think of outside of its functionality—shows both things as tools for expression. In other words, the bed and the match being represented from a similar perspective include these objects in Furni’s fiction.

The “rhythmic” feeling of both series point to a continuty beyond the exhibition. The artist exhibits a slice of her practice, while isolating a section of time. The works, which we know have a before and an after, make the process of production accessible—the consciousness that not every- thing is at the exhibition space triggers an inevitable sense of curiosity, a tense form of the unknown. The “Spatial Experiments,” represented in the exhibition with one canvas, foreshadow where the artist is going with the perception of time and space. Male barbershops, which women cannot or do not enter, and all-male coffee shops are portrayed on large square canvases; Furni represents these invisible barriers of gender through the perfect, square canvas that imprisons the image and challenges the painter to pictorially represent a spatial tension. The paintings employ different mis-en-scènes, made mobile by the visual language of the drawings; these direct and complete the story. The artist selects objects from her messy living space and by abstracting these objects, seeks a hierar- chy, an organization. The background, which has been left as is, exposes this reflection. Furni’s images describe momentary impressions; loneliness and privacy becomes the artist’s subject, transcending their quotidian role.

The stories that begin on paper as drawings stand on their own on the canvases, abstracted. In other words, the affinity between Furni’s match and bed diaries, and her obsessive relationship with material, has a tumultuous movement [between mediums?]; her canvases become independent as they move these minute stories to a fictional world. Perhaps each one of the canvases can be related to the drawings; their integrity is a reflection, an anchoring of the unity of Furni’s visual and intellectual world, pointing out that Furni transforms the daily without separating herself from it. This togetherness shows that the artist does not distinguish be- tween herself and the thing that is the same everyday; on the contrary, she works with the tension right under the surface of that very lack of difference. Furni, with this exhibition, highlights that the constructedness in painting is both a quotidian obsession and a projection of internal stories and emotions.

Merve Ünsal, Rampa Gallery