Where are you? // Biz burdayız

  • Dates
    2019 - Ongoing
  • Author
  • Topics Contemporary Issues, Documentary, Social Issues, Sports
  • Locations Istanbul, Spain

"Where are you? // Biz burdayız [We are here]" is a long-term & ongoing project which aims to question and destroy clichés regarding the situation of queer people in different places – Turkey and the EU.

"Where are you? // Biz burdayız [We are here]" is a long-term & ongoing project which aims to question and destroy clichés regarding the situation of queer people in different places – Turkey and the EU.

When I first met the queer people behind and event called the Queer Olympix, organized every summer in Istanbul, back in 2019, they were a bit wary of what my intentions, as a European photographer, would be. They feared I would look for sad stories. But regardless of the reality of the situation in Turkey, which is every day more dire, there was no sap story there. Instead I had the privilege to partake for several years in the explosion of joy that are the Queer Olympix – a moment in public where queer people can play sports and freely be themselves without fear. Not only that but the organizers try to change the way we play sports, competition and body norms are banned from the games.

Since I started this project, the situation in Europe and the US has also taken a turn with regards to LGBTQ rights – with the most prominent backlash and attacks targeting trans people, and more specifically yet, their participation in sports. But cis gay men also face more and more violent attacks, as do lesbians – even on the legal level with a town in Italy recently taking it upon itself to revoke parental rights for the non-biological mother in lesbian couples.

With those two things in mind, I photographed joy and community in Turkey and places where LGBTphobic attacks have occurred in Europe (with those ranging from verbal assault to actual murder), hoping to change the classic discourse around LGBTQ rights.