Hüseyin Bahri Alptekin
September 19, 2009
“Trained in art, sociology and philosophy, Hüseyin Bahri Alptekin is one of the key figures of Turkish contemporary art. Examining social, cultural and geopolitical issues, his artistic practice re-appropriated references to the urban reality of different cities. The city of Istanbul with its protean urban design was a constant source of inspiration.
The neon sign featuring the sentence “Don’t Complain” was initially shown as part of a larger multimedia installation in the Turkish Pavillion at the 52nd Venice Biennial in 2007, and connects with the artist’s previous investigations of urban reality. Whilst working with various types of signage, the choice of material is an integral part of the work. The lettering, made using an LED (Light Emitting Diode) technique, indirectly refers to the recent expansion of this material mostly distributed by Chinese manufacturers.
“Don’t Complain” is an imperative that implies a hierarchical situation, although telling someone not to complain is also, in the words of the artist ‘in essence complaining at the same time’. The message is open to many interpretations, depending on potential addresses, and projects a desire for a more active stance towards social reality.”