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Hypnotized Istanbul

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Erdal Inci is a video artist who has worked for the past few years on animated GIF artworks. Forget ugly and awkward banners on old school websites; his works are fresh and captivating. Erdal Inci graduated from Ankara’s Hacettepe University art department in 2005 and moved to Istanbul in 2009. Mashallah News got in touch to ask him a couple of questions.

Is it new to use GIF as an artistic expression? Why did you choose this form of art?

The GIF format is 25 years old. With the increasing of internet speed, it is used more and more frequently. My videos deal with such topics as movement, rhythm, repetition and time. The GIF format is in an eternal cycle. This overlapped with the loop logic behind my videos, so I started to convert my old videos into GIF. I opened a blog where I continue to publish my current works.

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Can you talk about the composition of your GIFs?

My latest works consist of digital clones of a figure moving rhythmically in the streets of Istanbul. I go to the streets to shoot. The atmosphere and the possibilities offered by the street determine what I am going to do at that moment. After that, comes the editing and cloning phase. In this process, I eliminate some of the shootings. Finally, I publish the compositions that convey emotion, that have a special atmosphere and that I find nice photographically.

How are these GIFs made technically?

I use 10-20 second video footages that I shoot with a fixed camera. I use this movement in commonly used software for cloning. Then I transform it into the GIF format.

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These images are quite hypnotic. Life in Istanbul is a bit like this, isn’t it? This incredible traffic, crowd…

Yes, this hypnotic effect is natural. These GIFs are like a constantly recurrent sound or visual of an oscillating clock. Istanbul is not a monotonous city. I usually choose locations where many people pass by. I think that these monotonous hypnotic images in well-known places create a kind of contrast.

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The original version was written in Turkish, the translation was edited by Nalan Erbil.

 

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