An immersive intervention into the gallery space pulls the viewer into an orifice, where large and small-scale drawings and collages are on display. The exhibition revolves around symbiogenesis, an evolutionary microbiology theory, and the question of agency.
Symbiogenesis can be described as the merging of two different organisms, which lead to the emergence of new species. It is the origin of a complex and multicellular life on earth that started with one simple cell swallowing another one, but failed to digest its prey. As the eaten cell resists digestion, and the predator fails to get rid of it, the process gives way to a collaborative, mutually beneficial co-existence made up of multiple singularities. This terminal indigestion, throughout the process of evolution composed humans, along with the rest of the macrocosmos.
Our own flesh is a patchwork of symbiosis. Humans as bio-collages are also colonized by microbes which surpass the number of cells that make up our bodies by up to a hundredfold. Our microscopic multi-specied origin reverberates in all the nebulous feelings and sharpest thoughts, in our sense of individuality and need for community, and finally in our fascination and abjection.
In her drawings and interwoven collages, Yağcıoğlu juxtaposes and interweaves archival imagery of body parts from popular scientific journals with fragmented landscape elements, photographs of canonic sculptural works and scientific visualization techniques. The role played by language and representation – both artistic and scientific - takes center stage in these works that draw upon the biological process to expand on the broader contemporary societal and ontological changes. The motif of the mouth (lips, teeth, tongue, cavity) stands out as a threshold between subject and object, self and the other; as the organ-image at the intersection of communication, digestion and sexual desire all at once.