Digital prints, installation
Crossdresser was commissioned for the 4th Çanakkale Biennial titled Only the Dead Have Seen the End of War (curated by Beral Madra, Seyhan Boztepe, and Deniz Erbaş in 2014) with the support of the German Embassy in Ankara. It was shown in 2019 as part of the eponymous exhibition in the residence of the Consulate General of Germany in Istanbul, curated by House of Taswir, and could be understood as a kind of “homecoming” of a special kind. The main inspiration for this work is a historic painting commissioned in Berlin in 1916 by Wilhelm II, which depicts the Emperor himself in Ottoman military uniform. It was a gift to the then Sultan of the Ottoman Empire Abdülhamid II as a sign of fraternization. Due to the collapse of two world empires and the resulting fateful circumstances, this gift never arrived to its new owner and thus ended up in the German Consulate General in Istanbul, where it still hangs today a hundred years later. Each of the four digital prints relates to one of the four years’ duration of World War I and reflects the adventurous path and history of the painting. With this artistic approach, Vert analyzes the relationship between the two countries during World War I and mirrors the mechanism that is set into motion through a world war: deconstruction and restruction.