Funded by
the European Union

This website was created and maintained with the financial support of the European Union.
Its contents are the sole responsibility of the Goethe-Institut Istanbul and do not necessarily reflect the views of the European Union.


Pistachio Time

June 2022 - April 2023

Pistachio Time is an art project based on the life of Ayşe, a relative of mine that lived in the village of Keklik (Zergil in Kurdish) in Gaziantep in the 1970s. At the age of 15, Ayşe falls in love with a man that works for her family and runs away with him. In the following months and even years, three relatives of hers, including my grandfather, kept looking for ways to end her life.

Özlem Köse began to delve into this story after remembering her paternal grandmother talking about it when, as a child, she used to visit her in the same village. Whenever there was trouble of any kind, whether financial or otherwise, she would blame her grandfather and say, “This is all his burden that we have to carry, that is why we’re in this situation.” It turns out that during the years when this was going on, the pistachio harvest had been very successful. However, with the money they made from the harvest, they had to pay the lawyer to get my grandfather out of prison and consequently found themselves in grave poverty.

Throughout this whole ordeal, the only person who was concerned with Ayşe’s wellbeing had been Köse's grandmother. This is an example of women’s struggle for survival, their sense of solidarity and empathy. Köse's focus with this project was to create life-affirming work against male dominance and violence towards women based on stories of her people. She listened to these women who have never been heard before and transformed their voices into words. 

Pistachio Time, 2022
11.01 min.

Özlem Köse

Özlem Köse graduated from Marmara University Faculty of Fine Arts Painting Department in 2017 and completed her master’s degree at the same university on ‘Disgusting Images in Contemporary Art: Abject Art’ in 2020. Köse’s works revolve around questions such as “ How does politics determine everyday life?” or “How does an individual’s search for meaning reflect on their daily life?” She searches for possibilities of a production that centers personal experience as well as narratives of waste and ordinary objects. She lives and works in Istanbul in video, painting, installation and photography. Among the exhibitions she participated in are Art As A Response To Mental Health (Doncaster, 2020); What the House Remembers; A Lesson in Images (Istanbul, 2019); Efemerid/Ephemera (Istanbul, 2017); Unexpected Land (Istanbul, 2016).

This page is published on 1 June 2022.
Last update: 8 June 2022