Ahmet Öğüt often employs humour to address complex issues, weaving loose narratives that connect collective memories, local histories and cultural identities. His work is rooted in the reality of everyday life and he uses the symptoms of social and political ideologies, systems and histories to produce ambitious projects that enact subtle shifts in perspective. Öğüt foregrounds the status and value of labour within the production of art, provoking a critical consciousness that calls into question the ethical and relational implications of the role of the artist and their work within the world.
For Another Perfect Day (2006) the artist collaborated with a Berlin-based barber who cut hair by the light of a motorcycle headlight. The performance references the creativity and improvisation employed in the everyday lives of people living and working in unstable political and economic environments. For Fahrenheit 451: Reprinted (2013), the artist reversed the role of the fire fighters in Ray Bradbury’s eponymous novel from 1953: instead of burning banned books, they were printed and distributed from a repurposed fire truck by members of the Fire Department from Espoo, near Helsinki.
Öğüt has had solo exhibitions at institutions such as Van Abbemuseum in Eindhoven, Horst-Janssen-Museum in Oldenburg, The Blackwood Gallery at University of Toronto, and Checkpoint Helsinki. He has participated in numerous group exhibitions including those at London’s Institute of Contemporary Arts, Palais de Tokyo in Paris, Chicago’s Museum of Contemporary Art, and Kunsthall Oslo. His work was featured in Performa 13 and he was artist in residence at the Rijksakademie in Amsterdam, and Delfina Foundation in London, in collaboration with Tate.
Courtesy of artspace.com, ahmetogut.com