Born in Ankara in 1970 and currently based in Istanbul, Banu Cennetoğlu presents a series of works that reflect her interest in information and how the significance of current affairs and contemporary culture shift over time. The exhibition includes a major new work entitled 11.08.2015, which represents every national, regional and local newspaper published in Germany on August 11, 2015. Over 1,000 newspapers have been collected, indexed and bound in order to make what Cennetoğlu has described as "both a unique reference library and an art object in which a day's news is the material and the subject." The installation can be seen as a portrait of a society and a celebration of the printed newspaper, a tradition that in Germany dates from the 17th century and is now threatened by a consumer preference for digital formats.
The Kunstverein has also collaborated with Cennetoğlu on an ongoing public intervention entitled The List. The List is a document that contains information relating to 22.394 known refugees and asylum seekers who have died within or on the borders of Europe since 1993. The data is compiled and updated each year by the Amsterdam based NGO, United for Intercultural Action. It will be circulated as a series of posters that will be displayed across the city of Bonn in January 2016.
Cennetoğlu has worked across the institution to develop her exhibition, which includes interventions within the building's external lighting and a new work that engages with the Kunstverein's Artothek. Other new works explore the subject of language including an expansive text work on the subject of denial composed entirely of gradually deflating helium balloons.
It is Cennetoğlu's first solo exhibition in Germany and the largest presentation of her work in four years. The exhibition has been generously supported by Stiftung Kunst, Kultur und Soziales der Sparda-Bank West and SAHA Association – Supporting Contemporary Art from Turkey.
Banu Cennetoğlu (b. 1970, Ankara) studied in Istanbul, Paris and New York before she was awarded a place at the Rijksakademie van Beeldende Kunsten in Amsterdam in 2002. Her work has been presented at the 10th Gwangju Biennale (2014), Manifesta 8 in Murcia (2010) and the 5th and 3rd Berlin Biennales (2008 and 2004). A major solo exhibition of her work was held at Kunsthalle Basel in 2011 and she was one of two artists who represented Turkey at the 53rd Venice Biennale (2009). She has been selected for the 2016 DAAD Artists-in-Berlin Program. Cennetoğlu lives and works in Istanbul where for the past nine years, she has also run BAS, a non-profit project space in the city centre dedicated to collecting, archiving, exhibiting and publishing limited edition artists' books.