ULTRASTUDIO 2017 – Bora Akinciturk – “We’re already dead, we just don’t know it yet”

ULTRASTUDIO 2017 – Bora Akinciturk – "We're already dead, we just don't know it yet"

ULTRASTUDIO 2017 Guest Program “From Light to Dust”


We’re already dead, we just don’t know it yet

Bora Akinciturk

June 25 – August 20, 2017

A 3d Keanu Reeves as Neo from The Matrix lies on a gurney, shirtless with electrodes attached to his chest and a transparent oxygen mask on his face. He’s in what looks like an emergency room. There are three nurses, two Asian women and a cartoon tiny winged donkey-man.

Neo hears a text to speech bot whispering “What if he took both pills?”

“He would lose all memory of what the Matrix is and who Morpheus and Trinity are and he would wake up in his pod, having no recollection of how he got there. He would then be rescued by people he did not recognise or had only seen in a dream. So – taking both pills would cause him to forget there even was a choice of pills to begin with.”

On the TV Ellen DeGeneres shows her audience this new invention from Japan, a vase like thing with both ends open. It’s something to shout into and it mumbles your scream.

“I wish I had that on election night” she says.

Crowd loves it, laughing ecstatically.

Later she’s dancing with a plush mannequin to a slowed down version of Justin Timberlake’s “Rock Your Body” song.

Crowd goes “Aww”

The moral of the story here is that pain becomes pleasure as pleasure becomes sadness. Or something like that. Time passes. And it’s just another system. Like Neo, if you take both pills you wake up from the Matrix unconscious. Awake without a purpose. A dog without a bone. Into this world you’re thrown.

© All images by Ivan Divanto, courtesy of the artist and ULTRASTUDIO.