Hasan Pehlevan

Memor(y)ial Destruction

September 5 - October 25, 2019

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Pg Art Gallery is pleased to host Hasan Pehlevan’s exhibition titled “Memor(y)ial Destruction” between 5 September and 25 October, 2019.


In his previous exhibition “Formicarium,” Pehlevan was examining the impacts of destruction on cities, people and history and found newly emerging cultural codes with destructions while inquiring whether it is possible to leave a cultural heritage for future generations.  In his article titled Realms of Memory, Pierre Nora, a French historian, talks about the need of history to arrange the past as a result of hopeless quests of change of the modern society in relation to the present. With the destruction of “true memory sites,” consciousness that has broken away from the past strives for reawakening the memory of the past and crystallizing it into embodiment, and this enables re-establishment of realms of memory.  Unless we build this bridge, space loses its meaning, character and memory along with history. It is not quite possible to talk about cultural codes of a space without a memory.


Extreme urbanization led to a kind of explosion in terms of both architecture and population and this might be said to be at the foundation of all big crises experienced by capitalism in the last century. According to Harvey, construction and urbanization lead to regular explosions and crises due to their speculative structures, even though they play a key role in the continuation of capitalism.


We see demolished cities as well as changing and transforming cities along with construction and urbanization.   These destructions effect not only changing and transforming buildings but also fields such as ecology, sociology and anthropology. Examining the destruction of historical sites in the last years, the artist sees and witnesses that constructions and destructions progress very rapidly, that structures are not protected, or they are destroyed and demolished, and that their memories are drained away. One of the most concrete examples of this is the demolition and destruction of Hasankeyf which has existed for almost 10,000 years.

“Memor(y)ial Destruction” traces historical sites/spaces which have been destroyed and permitted to be lost. Following these traces, Pehlevan desires to revive a lost, annihilated or destroyed memory by creating an excavation site over a space to represent all these destructions. Just as Benjamin said, nothing happens as decided upon and as expected. At this stage, the artist leaves the gaps in the space for the spectator’s own urban experiences and interpretations.




Hasan Pehlevan (1986, Silvan):  The artist graduated from Marmara University, Faculty of Fine Arts, Department of Painting. He received his master’s degree from Yeditepe University, Institute of Social Sciences, Department of Plastic Arts. Believing in the power of form, the artist restores iconic forms. He also paints murals in indoor and outdoor spaces with anonymous interventions on public spaces. He focuses on sense of belonging, identity and historical buildings’ destruction.


Enis Karavil: Graduating from Bentley University, Boston, Enis Karavil received interior architecture education at Inchbald School of Design in London and was listed as one of the best designers of 2016 in Andrew Martin Interior Design Review which is accepted as the holy book of interior design. As the creative director of Sanayi313 which was awarded in 2017 European Property Awards in the Mixed-use Interiors category, Karavil received the award of Interior Architect of the Year in 2018 in Elle Decoration International Awards. Enis Karavil continues to bring creative projects to life.