Heroes by Köken Ergun

  • VENUE: Gorman Arts Centre : Ralph Wilson Theatre
  • COST: Free
  • PRESENTER: Australian War Memorial, Artspace Sydney and Protocinema
  • WHEN: 6:30pm to 8:30pm
    18 April 2018

Heroes deals with concepts of martyrdom and heroism that evolve around the legacy of the Gallipoli/Çanakkale Campaign. To realise the piece, Ergun worked closely with Gallipoli tour guides from Turkey, Australia and New Zealand, initially embedding himself as a regular guest without filming and then documenting more than fifty tours, culminating in 120 hours of footage.

The resulting single-channel film offers a rare insight into what the artist terms the ‘tourism of martyrdom’. It brings together varied war narratives as told by the different tour guides, the emotional reactions of their audience, interviews with tour participants and patriotic theatre plays organised by the Turkish state to further impassion tourists visiting martyr monuments and graves. The work draws attention to the different permutations of the same history and how it is conveyed and experienced – through the frame of martyrdom in the more religious culture of Turkey, and heroism in the more secular cultures of Australia and New Zealand.

Q & A with the artist Köken Ergun follows the screening.