Can Altay: The Church Street Partners’ Gazette

For his first solo show in London, Can Altay transforms The Showroom into the production site of a single edition newspaper: The Church Street Partners’ Gazette. The project draws on research and dialogues with a wide range of people connected to the local area, who Altay terms ‘partners’, and tries to expand the notion of partnership beyond its economic and juridical use.

The Gazette is created through workshops such as one on headline writing, and discussion events at The Showroom under the headings of ‘Partnership’, ‘Boundaries’ and ‘Transformation’. Areas of investigation include rights to space, promises and threats related to regeneration, and limits presented by physical, social, political and economic boundaries.

The installation comprises of centres of activity: a meeting area, where the content of the paper is generated through open discussions and research; and a changing display of the Gazette incorporating large headlines, announcing the most recent fragments of the editorial, which are updated and reconfigured as copy is produced, and accompanied by a photographic survey.

The final version of the Gazette goes into print at the end of the show, offering its readers a study of the overlooked issues of local urban life.

Altay’s work is known for its focus on improvised architectures in the city, unauthorised systems of organisation and models of co-habitation. The Gazette continues his interest in ‘setting a setting’: a body of work where he proposes and constructs provisional spaces for gathering and production.

On 24 February 2011 Can Altay gave a talk at the Architectural Association, titled ‘Exercise in Sharing: Inhabitants, Settings and a Gazette’ as part of the Bedford Press Lecture Series. Video documentation of the talk is on the AA website.

The Church Street Partners’ Gazette is generously supported by Outset, Tansa Mermerci Eksioglu, Fusun Eczacibasi and Berna Tuglular, and is part of Circular Facts, funded with support from the European Commission.


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