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Kazım Kızıl, aka “Ka”, journalist at Kamera Sokak, photographer and video activist, was taken into custody on April 17 while he was covering a protest demonstration in Izmir, then jailed for three months. At the first hearing on July 10, Kazım Kızıl and the 6 students arrested along with him were freed on parole. His trial continues nonetheless. He is accused of insulting the President.

Kazım Kızıl is just one among thousands of prosecuted journalists. As of today some 170 are being held hostage in Turkish prisons. Zehra Doğan, Deniz Yücel, Ahmet Şık, Ahmet Altan, are only some of the others… Loup Bureau is also among them.

Can they truly be silenced? They use every means available to shout out the truth. As did Ahmet Şık, who has been denied the right to receive or to send a single letter in over 200 days of imprisonment, they record their truth through their testimony. Or again, as artist and journalist Zehra Doğan, deprived of her material, who uses the fruit from the canteen as paint, and her fingers as paintbrushes. No paper? There are newspapers… And a ballpoint and a notepad can be all that’s needed to conduct an interview from jail.

Once they leave jail, do they submit for that reason?

No, of course not.

“Ka” gets to work!

Here is a message Kazım Kızıl published on his Facebook account on September 6th.

I felt like sharing a bit…
You know, I went through a hard period. In fact, it’s not really over yet. The trial continues in fact, plus…well, other matters for concern…No need to go into details over those « others » because they are more than enough for one man…

During that three month period, I missed two things tremendously, apart from my family and my friends : my camera and nature… When I came out, I almost threw myself on nature. Then I did some minimalist thingies in black and white… I was subjected to so much iron and concrete during a time that may seem short to you but felt terribly long to me, drops on a leaf, seeing water running out of a hose again, the perfect geometry of a spider web, the fact my feet were touching dried leaves on the ground, the rustle from the trees, those small things (which are enormous, in fact) moved me more and more. (My darling Demet’s garden…) Tiny little details. Small things that, when abstracted, become even more magnificent…This is why it’s done in a minimalist style…

As for black and white, this is something I’ve been doing for a long time. First of all, everything that I witnessed during the June 5th attack, then the places, the people thrown into misery, beginning with Cizre… Above that, the difficult three month period. I started seeing everything in black and white. So intensely that while I used to take photos in color and modify them afterwards, now I take them in black and white directly.

During this period, I found myself facing many questions such as « will you write inside, are you thinking of writing a book? »

Let’s skip over the business of a book (because it strikes me as ridiculous) but yes, there are many memories, stories and problems I could write about concerning life in jail. But I haven’t even written about it on Facebook and I don’t think that I will write up these things. I don’t want to tell a story based on the fact I was in jail. I just want to make videos that will be useful (yes, they have to be useful!) that will be good from the sound to the music, from the camera to the editing, from the color to the theme. Good documentaries. I don’t want to be « the guy who went to jail », but « the guy who makes videos ».

I’ve been out for close to two months. I had to rest. I rested a bit. I needed to stock up on energy, I gathered up some. I had to heal myself, I’ve healed myself a bit. Even if it’s only a bit, even if difficulties show up with the rest of the proceedings, I feel incredibly « strong ».
And now?
Now, it’s time to keep on going on from where I was. Starting on Saturday, I will be in the vicinity of Gaziantep, Kilis, Hatay,to start preliminary work on a new documentary.
The short version of what I want to say : me and my camera are coming back into the field.
(PS :Don’t think the minimal photos are finished. You’ll be subjected to a bit more. Deal with it!)

Enjoy two of Kazım’s diaporamas with a selection of photos titled “Minimal” and three videos…

Kazım published the following video on July 31 with this comment:

Seeing stones, not in walls but where the water embraces them ; seeing water, not flowing out of a fountain not keeping still, in effervescence…After the piles of iron and concrete, seeing something that boils over… How beautiful!
I liberated the water!” Taloche*said, “I liberated the water! » Oh, how beautiful, how beautiful!

(*) Reference to Gatlib’s film “Freedom”, 2009


KAZIM KIZIL Facebook | Twitter @kazimkizil | Vimeo

In French Kazım Kızıl, alias “Ka” : allez, au boulot !

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