The Visit

Video
2020
40’15”

The information that Murtaza Elgin’s grave was found in Zincirlikuyu Cemetery was information in the newspapers of the period, but the address of Elgin’s grave was not available on the internet since the state cemetery archives were digitized in 1996 and beyond. Leman S. Darıcıoğlu went to the Zincirlikuyu Cemetery and got the address information from the archive: 28th island, grave 479. The fact that the 28th island was full of family cemeteries led Darıcıoğlu to look at the secluded corners, making them think that he could not be buried in families. With the help of the staff who cared for the graves, the artist searched high and low for the 28th island and when they could not find the grave at thee end, they called the archive department, and found the grave of Murtaza among the family graves at the entrance of the 28th island with the map they sent. A tombstone with weeds wrapped and its tombstone broken and falled. Kind of “no-grave”.
The next step was to re-establish it and leave white lilies and a sound on its chest.

* Murtaza Elgin was the first people diagnosed with HIV in Turkey in 1985. The doctor who diagnosed him also talked to the newspapers and gave them this information in order to gain fame through it. He was one of the vocalist of a famous Turkish singer. Since the newspapers published the news that he was infected with his name and his photo, he had left alone by popular culture people who were his friends until that time. His life had become a matter of public record until he died. When he died in 1992, there was only two people in his funeral. The imams who washed him wrapped his body up with plastics, they put him in a zinc coffin and burried him in a 2.5 meters tomb covered with limestone powder.

The Visit is commissioned by EUROPACH for HIVStories: Living Politics exhibition Istanbul curated by Zülfukar Çetin, Agata Dziuban, Friederike Faust, Emily Jay Nicholls, Noora Oertel, Todd Sekuler, Justyna Struzik, Alper Turan.

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