Body Double – Stockholm Istanbul

Body Double gather eight choreographers based in Turkey and Sweden for a bilateral exchange project. First in May in Stockholm at MDT and then in December Istanbul at Alt Bomonti. The dramaturgy of the two gatherings is echoed at both places. They start off with two days of public shows by the guesting artists, followed by four days of artistic laboratory. The cities of Stockholm and Istanbul are in focus during the labs, where the artists mainly work in duos formed by a chance lottery. Collected materials will contribute to choreographic podcasts. 

With Mustafa Kaplan, Peter Mills, Rani Nair, Ilyas Odman, Zoë Poluch, Filiz Sizanli, Björn Säfsten and Bahar Temiz.

The project has grown in a over more than two years long conversation mainly between choreographer Filiz Sizanli and curator Anna Efraimsson (of The Blob) with choreographer Björn Säfsten and the other artists.


 MDT, Stockholm
21–22 May 2016

Saturday 21 May:
18:00 We need to move urgently (Taldans)
20.00 In Love (Bahar Temiz)
21.30 Happy Happy Together (Ilyas Odman)

Sunday 22 May:
15.30 Lecture by curator/ scholar Gurur Ertem (free entry with ticket to either Body Double performance)
17:00 We need to move urgently (Taldans)
19.00 In Love (Bahar Temiz)
20.30 Happy Happy Together (Ilyas Odman) 

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Gurur Ertem
Lecture:Erratic Moves from the Borderland: Contextualizing the Independent Contemporary Dance Scene in Turkey.

Gurur Ertem contextualizes the advancement of the independent contemporary dance scene in Turkey since the late 1990s and discuss the impact of local history, individual initiatives, international exchange programs, and European dance networks on the trajectory of field. Drawing on the example of iDANS, a not-for-profit private structure Ertem co-founded that organized an annual international performing arts festival in Istanbul between 2006-2013, she discusses the potentials, promises, and pitfalls of working in Istanbul today against the backdrop of wider political developments. 

Gurur Ertem is an Istanbul-based cultural sociologist and the artistic co-­director of iDANS (Istanbul) where she is responsible for curatorial research, theory, and publications. Ertem is a specialist in contemporary dance culture, and assumes multiple roles as academic, critic, dancer, curator, dramaturge and editor. She recently completed PhD in Sociology at the New School for Social Research (New York). She is the editor of Solo? in Contemporary Dance (2008) and Dance on Time (2010) as well as other Turkish language publications on dance. She coordinates the “iDANSblog”, an online platform of dance scholarship and criticism.
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”We need to move urgently” 

“There is a beautiful mess outside, how can you stay in?” is written on a city wall. “We need free space not castle dreams” says another wall text.

This project initially began by questioning the responsibility and role of art and science in current society. Later the process was subjected to a forceful social event that changed the course of the work — the events in Gezi park in Istanbul in 2013.

It was only one in a series of many deep social — and artistic — upheavals in the past years, from New York over Brazil or Lisbon to Istanbul. They gave rise to thousands of spontaneous ideas, initiatives and gave birth to a temporary social order that organized itself. Social cybernetics in the making.

Objects gathered from various cities, prompted us, as three individual performing artists, to relate to the events. Back in the studio, they became materials for an analogue spatial and mental model where we could grasp the processes and work in a free space. A model to zoom in and out from.

Concept: Taldans. Creation: Filiz Sizanli, Mustafa Kaplan, Vania Rovisco. Light: Jan Maertens. Production: Platform 0090, Taldans, Wp Zimmer, Buda, fabrik Potsdam. Artistic advice: Zhana Ivanova, Pieter T’Jonck, Cevdet Erek, Marcus Rovisco. Project management: Fırat Kuşçu & Valerie De Visscher. Thanks to: Demimonde na Galeria da Boavista-Lisboa for hosting our live process, ÇATI Association-Istanbul for providing workspace. Taldans is sustained by the EMWAP project and funded by the European Culture programme. Premiered in January 2014 at the festival Made in Germany.

Bahar Temiz
”In love” 

In Love, a two-part solo dance performance supported by objects and sculptures, is intending to activate the potential sensitivity of the inanimate. The movement vocabulary is aimed at turning the body into a moving sculpture. Everything is visible, and even over visible.

Part 1: I
In this world of over exposure, we navigate from one scene to another by weightlessness proper to tactile experiences. How to make a tactile experience visible? How to hide and reveal in a world of over exposure? How to make an image last over time

Part 2: II
Part two focuses on the conflictual aspect of any concept, in this case the concept of love. In Part 2: II, we witness how one (I) is transformed into two (II) over the process of splitting, multiplication, division, reproduction, reflection, repetition, identification, separation etc. In a world of opposites, we are constantly pulled, pushed and torn apart by the object of our desire.

“If love is so strong that it creates an attachment hard to be torn apart, hate intensifies more and more. In this sense, love is considered as a battle between two sides trying to ruin each other by passing through the walls of protection of other’s identity.” (RUSSELL Bertrand, A History of Western Philosophy, Volume 1, New Age, p.20, translation from the Turkish translation by Bahar Temiz)

Temiz has worked around topics such as love, war, fear, touch, fear of unknown and protection to find an hybrid form for a dance inspired by visual arts, cinema and architecture.

Concept and performance: Bahar Temiz 
Sculpture: Ceylan Dökmen 
Costume: Güssol 
Music: Berke Özcan, A year from the wind that was a year ago; Claudio Monteverdi, Lamento della Ninfa; Godspeed You! Black Emperor, Their Helicopters’ Sing; Joy Division, Digital; SND, Three 
Light design: Martin Kaffarnik 
Wooden construction: Stef Depover, Metin Sakin 
External eye: Mesut Arslan, Michael De Cock, Smaranda Olcese, Marc Vanrunxt 
Thanks to Arda Ateş, Erinç Aslanboğa, Meryem Bayram, Anna Efraimsson, Chrystel Herbeaux DelPino, Ender Üstüngel, Wim Viaene, Valerie De Visscher 
Co-production: Platform 0090, Kunstcentrum Buda (Kortrijk, Belgium), APAP – Advancing Performing Arts Projects / Performing Europe Network, funded by the European Commission – Culture programme
With the support of De Feniks Walpurgis (Mortsel, Belgium), Maison de la Culture d’Amiens – Centre de creation et de production (France), Centre National de la Danse (Paris, France)

Ilyas Odman
”Happy happy together”

Two men are tied to each other through their ears with a ring.

”Happy happy together” is a performative interpretation of Wong Kar Wai’s Hong Kong movie Happy Together from 1997 depicting a tumultous relationship starring Leslie Cheung and Tony Leung. Happy happy together is a sequel to Odman’s glasstepsss which explored the deep personal desire and quest to be united with another. Odman’s approach to choreography goes through theater and acrobatics.


Artist biographies here.


Curated by: Anna Efraimsson/The Blob and Filiz Sizanli in conversation with Björn Säfsten.
Production: The Blob, Taldans, Firat Kusçu, Säfsten Produktion, Nordberg Movement.
Coproduction: Säfsten Produktion and MDT.
Supported by: Prof. Erol Nezih Orhon at the Anadolu University Faculty of communication sciences, Consulate General of Sweden in Istanbul, The City of Stockholm, Swedish Arts Council, The Swedish Arts Grants Committee.

Graphic design: Studio Jonas Williamsson