22 July - 30 October 2022

Cevdet Erek

Manifesta 14 | Kosovo

SAHA provides production support for Cevdet Erek’s project “Brutal Times” in Manifesta 14 which takes place in Prishtine between 22 July - 30 October 2022. 

In Brutal Times, Istanbul-based artist and musician Cevdet Erek creates a spatial composition installed in the Rilindja building informed by its history, architecture, and its place in the collective memory of Prishtine. The Rilindja building was designed by Macedonian architect Georgi Konstantinovski and was built in the 1970s. The building is accepted as one of the pioneers of a new period in Prishtine; as the scholar Kujtim Elezi writes: “big, bold and dynamic Rilindja ushered in the concrete monumentality that became known as brutalism”. 

Brutal Times aims to transform the leftover space temporarily by interpreting Rilindja building’s -mostly hidden or lost- architectural language by a series of architectural interventions, by a moving graphic display and by a multichannel sonic composition. As a site-specific installation, Brutal Times is an effort to blend certain architectural, sonic and graphic languages associated with specific historical periods with site specific experimentation in order to create a bodily experience of; space, sound and histories that those languages could relate to. At the other hand the work aims to draw attention to the existing condition of the symbolically important Rilindja building and to contribute to the discussion of its future cultural use. 

Across 25 different iconic venues – from the Palace of Youth and Sports to the Great Hammam – and featuring over 100 participants, Manifesta 14 aims to support the citizens of Kosovo in their ambition to reclaim public space and to rewrite the future of their capital as an open-minded metropolis in the Balkans and in Europe through the development of a new cultural institution.

Cevdet Erek (1974, Istanbul) is an artist and musician. A major part of Erek’s artistic practice is site-specific installations. Contemplating and exploring rhythms, his work produces intense bodily experiences and establish provocative correlations between different temporalities and histories, forms and languages.His unique spatial and sonic language is partly rooted in his university education and experience in architecture, sound engineering and design and in his continuing music practice. Erek’s work often involves architectural interventions that include the unconventional use of sound systems and graphics. They are occasionally stimulated by improvised performance.

About Manifesta

Manifesta, the European Nomadic Biennial, changes location every two years. Founded in the early 1990s, Manifesta rethinks the relation between culture and civic society, investigating and instigating positive social change through contemporary culture in response to, and in close dialogue with, the social sphere of the Host City and its communities. Manifesta has consistently chosen unexpected host locations that reflect Europe’s ever-changing DNA to shed light on a world defined by changing ethical and aesthetic imperatives. Manifesta, as a recurring event, has transformed itself into a multilayered and inclusive instrument of civic engagement projects.

The Brutal Times


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