Zehra Doğan’s story, from Nusaybin to the Tate Modern

zehra dogan

Here is the English translation of a video along with an article published by Euronews  on May 17 2019. Zehra Doğan speaks of her feelings about the installation she has realized at the Tate Modern in London.


Türkçe | Français | English

“Along with three other artists, I will be exhibiting at the Tate Exchange from May 21st to 25th.  I will be exhibiting an installation with which I will relate what happened in the region [the Kurdish towns in Southeastern Turkey]. Moreover, there will be articles I published after collecting stories directly from the inhabitants.

I’m very happy about this context. As an artist whose drawing supplies were confiscated in Turkish jails, who had more than twenty drawings confiscated and destroyed, I’m very happy. The fact that these works which they tried to censor should now be exhibited in a place such as the Tate Modern has a lot of meaning. At the same time, what an artist would most wish is to produce art on her own lands, and that the art she makes be exhibited in those lands.

I will give just a small example… I spoke to my mother about my exhibition at the Tate Modern. But she asked: “What’s Tate?”. This is not to undermine the importance of my installation, but the fact that an exhibition occurring in a place she doesn’t know will not make her any happier. The fact of exhibiting close to her, in Diyarbakır, in Mardin, an exhibition she could attend with her neighbors would make my mother much happier. I give an example of an artist’s family, but this holds true for writers and for all artists and intellectuals.

Really, the greatest punishment for an artist, what makes him or her most unhappy is being forced to work far from his or her lands.

Obviously, the Tate Modern is important and this is wonderful but, please, support all artists subjected to oppression in Turkey, support the journalists, the authors. I think there is need for more international solidarity. That way, we could produce even more beautiful things on our lands.”

You can also read the Euronews article in Turkish, by clicking HERE.

ALSO READ this interview in which Zehra speaks at length about art.

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Renée Lucie Bourges
REDACTION | Auteure, traductrice et interprète

Née au Québec dans une famille franco-irlandaise, elle a vécu et travaillé comme rédactrice et traductrice en Amérique et au Moyen Orient. Elle réside dorénavant dans le sud-ouest de la France d'où elle écrit des romans en anglais, et fraternise au quotidien avec tous les autres funambules de son espèce.  |
*A word to English-speaking readers: in all instances where the original text is in Turkish or Kurdish, the English version is derived from French translations. Inevitably, some shift in meaning occurs with each translation. Hopefully, the intent of the original is preserved in all cases. While an ideal situation would call for a direct translation from the original, access to information remains our main objective in this exercise and, we hope, makes more sense than would a translation provided by AI... | iknowiknowiknowblog.wordpress.com
Renée Lucie Bourges

REDACTION | Auteure, traductrice et interprète Née au Québec dans une famille franco-irlandaise, elle a vécu et travaillé comme rédactrice et traductrice en Amérique et au Moyen Orient. Elle réside dorénavant dans le sud-ouest de la France d'où elle écrit des romans en anglais, et fraternise au quotidien avec tous les autres funambules de son espèce.  | *A word to English-speaking readers: in all instances where the original text is in Turkish or Kurdish, the English version is derived from French translations. Inevitably, some shift in meaning occurs with each translation. Hopefully, the intent of the original is preserved in all cases. While an ideal situation would call for a direct translation from the original, access to information remains our main objective in this exercise and, we hope, makes more sense than would a translation provided by AI... | iknowiknowiknowblog.wordpress.com

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