Where am I? As if in a dream... Did we arrive?

Where am I? As if in a dream... Did we arrive?, 2016-2018
Concrete sculpture, 100 * 285 * 950 cm

Where am I? As if in a dream... Did we arrive? is a permanent public space project realised for the city of Rüsselsheim. The project comprises three parts; the migration route of a Syrian woman to Europe, writings and the sitting area.

The route
The curved form of the sculpture represents the stages of the Balkan route from Syria to Europe, over which thousands of migrants fled to freedom in 2015. It starts from Deir ez-Zor in Syria and ends in Gothenburg in Sweden via Istanbul, Izmir, Athens, Belgrade, Budapest, Vienna, Hamburg and Copenhagen.

The writing concentrates on the common feelings having had and the questions being asked at the very moment of arrival: “Where am I?” is the first question asked when trying to understand the people, their behaviours and the structure of the society to position yourself in this structure. “As if in a dream...” expresses the range of feelings from ambiguity to success. After all the struggle, the migrant physically reaches the new home to start a new life. However, in his/her mind it is still being questioned; is it true? have I really arrived?. “Did we arrive?” is a question asked to the society living in the country of arrival and waits for an answer.

Sitting Area
The project combines the route and the writing with a large sitting platform. Sitting, as an activity, associates with settlement and settlement is about becoming a place. In principle, if you become a place, then the place becomes you as well. It is an interrelationship.

This area aims to embrace many people. It is designed as a half ellipse shape. Its combination with the route creates multiple edges and possibilities (lying, sitting) for the people who would like to spend their time on it.

(¹) “Where am I? As if in a dream... Did we arrive? “ based on an interview on BBC with the Syrian woman who made the route from Deir ez-Zor in Syria to Göteborg in Schweden.

where am i_fast_3 from Özlem Gunyol on Vimeo.

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