Wet City


The artist criticizes the rapid transformation and change of İstanbul, which is being shaped by the desire to make it a world metropolis, using a "slow" photograph production technic dating from the 19th century. Portraying the new structures and residential areas presented by urban transformation and "gentrification" projects together with all of their contradictions, the artist tries to decipher how this concept forms in the downfall of society and occurrence of symptoms.

In order to determine and exhibit the new relationship and problem networks developed by presentation of protected, elitist and luxurious buildings which have arisen after legal invasions instead of the natural, organic and naturally formed and marketed with new promises, the artist realized countless "field works" in plaza, shopping center and urban transformation zones.

These very artificial and mechanic life forms, new and marketed with an imaginary "happy living" promise, form the "Wet City" through the manipulative interventions of the artist on their photographs. Therefore, "Wet City" aims to place in the viewers' memory the psychological downfall and social experiences of the individual, who is stuck among the political, cultural and sociologic structures which monopolized through urban transformation.

Şen, while -through their chemically formed production process of their photographs- building images that are impossible to reproduce, also plans to share with the viewers the psychology of liquidity, melting down and re-existence, hence confronting them with the overwhelming effects of transformation. Therefore, the artist meets the "silent war" metaphor in Fenton's "Death Valley" photograph and the depression of "Migrant Mother", an icon of depression, on the wet plate.