SOON AT THE REFUGIUM :: VIRON EROL VERT: SATURN & MERCURY
Born 1975 in Germany to a mother of Greek-Italian origin and a father from the Syrian-Greek orthodox minority, Viron Erol Vert grew up in Istanbul, Athens and the northern part of Germany, and studied design and visual art in Antwerp and Berlin, where he completed his masters degree at the KHB in Berlin, working in the local nightlife parallel to his studies. This extremely diverse background also expresses itself in almost every aspect of his work. Like Istanbul, but also Berlin, it sources its dialectics from straddling opposites and dualities such as East and West and their respective ideologies, the archaic and the futuristic, the organic and the geometric, the abstract and concrete, or art and design. While bringing the almost lost Turkish tradition of hand knotted woolen carpet to life, and the artisanal building of angular display cases that are still used by street vendors in cities like Istanbul and have a long history in the street-culture since the Ottoman empire, the installation which Viron Erol Vert especially created for Refugium, is loud and dynamic and yet also demure and contemplative. Revealing the fractal geometrics behind all things natural, an ancient Eastern evidence which Western science only recently discovered, it also reads as a perfect metaphor for Istanbul and Berlin, as a place of endless mirroring. Interconnected by a ‘Platonic Cabinet’, the two carpets on show belong to the series The Sun, Saturn, Mercury, The Moon, Mars, Venus and Jupiter, a play on orientalism, astrology, and science, thematizing the idea and mythology of the flying carpet. During his research Vert found in old texts that the carpet was commissioned by God but woven by devils. Playing on this ambivalence, the work is meant to be a musing on the intersection between values such as good and evil, notions such as identity, and Vert’s believe in geometry as a symbol of global structure and a solution for present topics, also social and political. (mb) REFUGIUM (BERLIN AS A DESIGN PRINCIPLE) – JUNE 5-9 / BERLIN TEMPELHOF.