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Ayşe Erkmen

Under the Roof

9 April — 30 May 2005

Turkish artist Ayşe Erkmen responds to museums and galleries as if she is amused and bemused by them, making art with ambivalence, very aware of the fact that it is the context which gives her gestures their artistic identity. Her work is not anti-institutional; rather it constitutes an interrogation of spaces, actual and metaphorical, dedicated to art. This installation, Erkmen’s first exhibition in the UK, was her reaction to a local situation, the immediate context of the exhibition and the architectural environment.

Under the Roof transformed Ikon’s second floor galleries through a breathtaking intervention, the creation of a false ‘ceiling’ of thousands of parallel lines of silicon cord, at the level of average head height. It radically altered the experience of the interior, unifying three distinct rooms with one gesture, wall to wall, suggesting a surface of a fluid medium finding its level to submerge the occupants.

This exhibition was supported by the Goethe-Institut London and The Henry Moore Foundation.