A Handful of Rights
14 March 2018 / 12:00 - 19:00
Pera Museum is presenting a month-long durational performance: A Handful of Rights by artist Aslı Uludağ. Inspired by Suna and Inan Kıraç Foundation Anatolian Weights and Measures Collection exhibition, and taking place over a month in the exhibition gallery of Intersecting Worlds: Ambassadors and Painters, the performance A Handful of Rights revisits the Universal Declaration of Human Rights on its 70th anniversary.
During this multi-phase performance, one by one the words contained in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights are erased from the Turkish dictionary, and are then translated into a numerical value based on their listing in this dictionary with participation from the gallery audience. These numbers are converted to the weight of wheat, reflecting an interpretation of the collective and settled lifestyle, proposed by this Universal Declaration of Human Rights. In the last stage of the performance, the artist aims to calculate the physical weight of the declaration based on the weight of the wheat.
The Universal Declaration of Human Rights was signed by the United Nations in 1948. Composed of thirty articles, this declaration provides the frame for equal rights, freedoms, and lifestyle for all people in the world regardless of their religion, language, race or gender. As the performance deconstructs and scrutinizes the declaration, the artist reinterprets this important text into various aspects, forms and concepts. The performance, in search for the lost meaning of words through a poetic and absurd approach, ironically takes place in the court of the ambassadors from the Ottoman era, whose portraits are displayed in the Orientalist Paintings Collection exhibition of the museum.
Aslı Uludağ’s A Handful of Rights performance is presented on the exhibition floor of the exhibition “Intersecting Worlds: Ambassadors and Painters” compiled from Suna and Inan Kıraç Foundation Orientalist Paintings Collection.