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‘I am alive by chance’

On the grounds of the exhibition concept based on the mental experiment of Schrödinger’s cat, I aim to explore the artistic creation inspired from my recent state of mind rooted in my experiences during the earthquake that occurred in Turkey. After my arrival to Izmir, on 5th February 2023, I woke up next morning with the news of the magnitude 7.8 and 7.6 earthquakes that took place in the south of the country. In total 11 cities were affected. Over 50,000 people died - registered in records -. Thousands remain missing. Not only with the extent of the destruction with these earthquakes but also with the endemic corruption and government policies, it was understood that many new buildings were not safe. More than 160,000 collapsed like lego toys and several were damaged. Therefore, the consequences of this natural disaster became worse with human failings and corruption.


I was only alive because the earthquake line was activated in the south, and not Izmir. Izmir had a magnitude 7.0 earthquake hit the Aegean Sea, killing 116 people the previous year. Could my building handle a 7.8 magnitude earthquake which lasts more than 80 seconds? The President of the country stated "Such things have always happened. It's part of destiny's plan”.


Every day of my stay in Turkey I felt 50-50 chances of surviving. ‘I am dead and alive at the same time. ’It is about a moment. A second. A chance. Only by chance, I am alive, if I am so.’ My friends from Portugal looked inside the box: ‘‘Sinem, I saw the news! Are you ok? Is your family ok?’’ ‘I am Schrödinger’s cat in this country.’ Talking from the box: ‘’Hello, we are ok dear, thank you for asking.’’  ‘Standing on the line of this duality.’


The work consists of two photographs and one text to express the state of this duality of being alive and dead standing side by side. The photographed spaces are planned to be used as a ‘triangle of life’. These parts are photographed in a way of reflecting this duality in framing. They represent a metaphorical line between 50% chances of Schrödinger’s cat, or I.

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