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Mama ğ – A talk with queer artist Aykan Safoğlu and his Mother Nevin Safoğlu

26. May 2017 17:00

“In 1942 my Mom – Nevin Safoğlu – was born in Istanbul, where she lives to this day. She retired shortly after she had given birth to me at age 42. Following her career in the banking sector she is now working for a cosmetics company at age 75. Back in 2009 I interviwed her for Kaos GL – a queer magazine from Ankara. We started this conversation with a recording device in my kitchen in Berlin, where she paid me a visit. It wasn’t easy to find a ‘common tongue’. After a while we began to argue – because I was her son and she was my mother. I told her what she was saying was not truthful and she insisted, that she could not express herself…
Remembering the moments we did not listen to each other, did not go without tension. At the peak of tension we put the recording device aside and continued with pen and paper. I wrote down questions. And she answered… As mother and son we found a method helping to prevent that our speechlessness or all the things we were not able to experience together spoiled our conversation today. We wanted to copy each other like elementary school kids playing ‘Stadt – Land – Fluss’ (a childs game. Translated: ‘City – Country – River’) – resulting in a discontenting conversation.
On May 26 we will try to become closer again in a public conversation. In the process we will talk about parenting, queerness, my artistic work, our ‘chosen families’ and migration.”
This conversation will be in Turkish, consecutively translated into German.