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Sleeping Museum Guard

60 x 60 x 90 cm
Silicone Sculpture

Halil Altındere's tradition of life- size sculptures primarily concentrates on the unseen but culturally and especially significant people from the locations he chooses to hold his shows. The work "Sleeping Museum Guard" (2019) features a life-sized sculpture of a sleeping security guard; the work aims to highlight the tireless efforts of museum staff in protecting exhibits and maintaining the public's safety.

The piece creates a sense of surprise and shock as the viewer is confronted with the security vacuum created by the sleeping guard next to a precious painting. The installation deceives the viewer by placing them in a position of power, where they can potentially take actions that would normally be prohibited by the presence of a vigilant guard. The sculpture not only reflects the artist's perception of hyper-reality but also questions the role of security and the nature of the work done by museum staff, putting the viewer in a position where they are not just a spectator but a potential participant.

Halil Altındere (b.1971) produces in various mediums and collaborates with ballet dancers, opera singers, hip hop artists, guides, police officers, architects. Mainly known for his works inquiring political, social and culture codes, and addressing resistance against oppressive systems, the artist chooses to tell about the issues in which he is interested by working with the people having first-hand experience and turning himself into a mediator. His recent works mostly focus on fantastically absurd situations which he encountered in daily life. A refugee astronaut, a dwarf security guard, a transvestite mermaid or an Olympic team consisting of heimatlos people appear in the moments when the artist forces the audience to face with the poignant realities that seem like imaginary.

Altındere’s works has been exhibited in many museums in solo and group exhibitions such as MoMa PS1, Centre Pompidou, MAXXI, MAK, CA2M, Les Abattoirs, and his works got into the collections of most of these museums. In addition to his exhibitions in institutions like Moderna Museet, Maat, ACC Gwangju, Secesssion, Mambo, Akademie der Künste, CCBB Rio, Andrew Kreps Gallery, n.b.k. Berlin, and Tensta Konsthall, the artist also attended most prestigious exhibitions such as Documenta and Manifesta, and important biennales such as Venice, Sao Paolo, Berlin, Istanbul, Sharjah and Gwangju.

Being also a curator and editor, Altındere edited the books “User’s Manual: Contemporary Art in Turkey, 1975-2015” with Süreyyya Evren, “101 Artworks: 40 years of Contemporary art in Turkey”, and “Contemporary Art of Turkey for Children” published by Yapı Kredi Publishing.