With a background in architecture, artist and writer  Pinar Ogrenci (1973, Van, Turkey) lives in Istanbul and Berlin. She is the founder and director of MARSistanbul, an art initiative launched in 2010. Since the late 1990s, Öğrenci has extensively written on contemporary art and architecture in magazines, including Agos, Radikal, ArtUnlimited, m-est, SALT Online, Arkitera, Arredemento Mimarlık, XXI, İstanbul, among others.

Her body of work, which consists mostly of video art and installations, is at the intersections of social and political content, everyday practices, and human stories. Carrying anthropological characteristics, her work focuses on war, forced displacement, collective movements, nationalism, assimilation,  and urban transformation. Yet, they vary independently of theme and geography. Ogrenci, in whose work the traces of ‘material culturestudies can be found, is interested movements of cultural and urban symbols, and their transformation. Employing the method of “thick descriptionfrom cultural anthropology, she interprets themes of violence, class inequality, and urban development from decolonial and feminist perspectives and attempts to visualize this interpretation, transcending the local contexts. While transforming the visual and audio documents she archives by detaching them from their contexts, she makes relational connections between different cultures, spaces, and time periods as well as architecture, literature, and history. The works of the artist, who makes site-specific installations influenced by her architectural practice, have atmospheric and poetic qualities.

Her works have been exhibited widely at museums and art institutions including at 12th Gwangju Biennial (2018), 6th Athens Biennail (2018), Tensta Konsthall Stockholm (2018), Jewish Museum Munich (2019), Kunst Haus Wien- Hundertwasser Museum, 2017; Württembergischer Kunstverein (WKV) Stuttgart, 2017; the Istanbul off-site project for Sharjah Biennial13, 2017; Angewandte, Vienna, 2016; MAXXI Museum, Rome, 2015-6; SALT Galata, Istanbul, 2015-6;  De Las Fronteras Biennial, Tamaulipas, 2015 and Depo, Istanbul, 2014-8. Her first solo exhibition abroad was realized at Kunst Haus-Hundertwasser Museum in Vienna, A Gentle Breeze Passed Over Us” in 2017.

She has participated in residency programs in HIAP, Helsinki, Finland, 2017; Henie Onstad Kunstcenter, Oslo, Norway, 2016; R.A.T., Mexico City, 2015; Willa Waldberta, Munich, 2010, as well as in festival, workshop and research programs, such as ‘Contemporary Geographies, Summer School (Latvian Centre for Contemporary Art, Kuldiga, Latvia, 2018), Migration and Symbols, Lecture Series (Leuphana University, Luneburg, Germany, 2017), Public Calling Conference at National Theatre Oslo, 2016; Middle East Festival, Henie Onstad Kunstcenter, Oslo, 2016; “Plataforma Editable, Desplazamientos Curatoriales: Santiago, Valparaiso, Antofagasta, Tarabacain Chile, 2015; “Public Space and Museumsat the CIMAM conference in Rio de Janerio, 2013. She is currently one of the fellows of District Berlin.


solo shows 

2017 A Gentle Breeze Passed Over Us, Kunst Haus Wien-Hundertwasser Museum, Vienna.

2017 Under the Red Sky, Depo Istanbul.

2015 Awaiting The Onset of The Sense of Life, MARSistanbul, Istanbul.

solo screenings and presentations

2019 Purple Panic:43, District Berlin, Lecture Performance

2018 Tensta Museum Project, Tensta Konsthall, Stockholm.

2018 LED Light City Istanbul, Between You and Me Video Platform, Tilburg, Holland.

2018 Un Peso, Bilsart, İstanbul.

group shows

2019 Survival Kit, Latvian Contemporary Center for Art.

2019 Say Shibboleth, Jewish Museum, Munich.

2018 12th Gwangju Biennial, Gwangju.

2018 6th Athens Biennial, Athens.

2018 Exclusively Inclusive, Gerdarsfan Kópavogor Museum, Iceland.

2018 Konst och affarer, Tensta Konsthal, Tensta Centrum, Stockholm.

2018 How the weather will be tomorrow?, Between Bridges, Berlin.

2018 Remote Memory, Abud Efendi Konağı, Istanbul.

2018 Say Shibboleth, Jewish Museum of Hohenems, Hohenems.

2018 First Raunt, Selection from Banu-Hakan Carmikli Collection, Greek School Karakoy, Istanbul.

2018 A Future of Travel / The Journey of the Artwork’, NOKS Art Space, Istanbul

2017 Bahar, the Istanbul off-site project for Sharjah Biennial13, Istanbul.
2017 Post Peace, Württembergischer Kunstverein (WKV), Stuttgart.
2017 Non Persons, Spaces, Situations, Bruthaus Galeri, Waregem.
2017 Artist At Risk Pavillion Athens, Perpetuum Mobilisation.
2017 Camouflaged Pearls, Bruthaus Gallery, Waregem.
2016 Luminous Perception, Galerie Michaela Stock, Vienna.
2016 Inverse Greyscale, Pasinger Fabrik, Munich.
2016  When Home Won’t Let You Stay, University of Applied Arts (Angawandte), Vienna.
2015-6 Apricots From Damascus, SALT Galata, Istanbul.
2015 İstanbul: Passion, Joy, Fury MAXXI Museum, Rome.
2015 1th. Frontiers Bienal, Tamaulipas, Mexico.
2014 4 th. Çanakkale Biennial, Canakkale.
2014 5 th. Sinop Biennial, Sinop.
2014 Technical Ecstasy, KUAD Gallery, Istanbul.
2014 Learned Helplessness, Bergsen&Bergsen Gallery, Istanbul.

2014 Homo Homini Lupus, m1886, Ankara.