Face Value - Material Mimicry at Space Debris


Address: Hoca Tahsin Sokak No: 15/1, Karaköy, Istanbul
Map: (Above the coffeeshop called ‘Press’) 

“We are here, just standing. 

We should have been other places, or perhaps we are exactly where we need to be. 

What are we? What are we entitled to?
Maybe our place, space, and surfaces are about that. Or all of that has changed and we are something else now. 

We became greater and we became smaller, we were hidden in plain sight. 

We came from the city streets and magnificent living rooms to this space. We are just standing here.
We might look the same, but has our essence changed? If everything that made us has changed, does that change us also?”

                                                                                                                           Sine Ergün, Istanbul, 2017 

Its not fake; its real. How could it be otherwise?
But not what it looks like, so you could call it deceptive. 

Vinyl, polystyrene, laminate, acrylic. In the modern-day city, these materials surround us at every turn. They are cheap, accessible, and can be formed into practically any shape by ever-advancing technologies. But there are deeper-rooted cultural habits and aesthetic tendencies that are slow to change. There is still an innate value placed on stone, the precious metals, glass, plaster and wood, though generally a dramatically diminished patience for their cost and time requirements. Insistence on quick fixes and low budgets require compromises to be made....and they are. Imitations, impersonations, improvisations - the results are often not without a sense of irony. 

Cities are a human creation. They are experienced simultaneously by millions of people. Layers physically and conceptually obstruct most of what is going on, creating an illusion of interior and exterior, public and private, yours and mine. 


Value is collectively negotiated. 

Appearance is key.

Visit me at the fair! Contemporary Istanbul 2016



'The Metromorphic Varieties' at TOZ


Opening: October 1st at 18:00 - 20:00
October 1,2 and 7,8 from 12:00 - 18:00 
other days by appointment
at TOZ Artist Run Space, Talimhane no:19B Yeldeğirmeni Kadıköy/ İstanbul
Curated by Sehan Musaoglu of Space Debris Art

‘The Metromorphic Varieties’ proposes a possible future step in evolution - animals evolving to blend into the built world, disguising themselves with the patterns and colors of the city. Using and adapting the principles of dazzle and disruptive camouflage, I illustrate this futuristic urban scenario. Cats, birds, turtles and rabbits, all common features of city life, are presented camouflaged in front of a panorama cityscape. Over half of the global population lives in urban areas, as do billions of animals. ‘The Metromorphic Varieties’ imagines how animals could, in the future, become more optically suited for the haphazard, man-made city environment.

Full Press Release
Facebook Event

'The Metromorphic Varieties' at Pasaj

pasaj web

Opening 21 January, 18:00
22 January - 13 February 
at Pasaj Tarlabasi
Kurdela Sokak 43/A, Beyoglu, Istanbul, Turkey
Google Maps Link

'The Metromorphic Varieties’ is a site-specific installation by Julie Upmeyer for Pasaj Tarlabasi - the tiny restaurant in Kurdela Sokak that PASAJ has transformed into an original contemporary art venue. It proposes a possible future step in evolution - animals evolving to blend into the built world, disguising themselves with the patterns and colors of the city. Using and adapting the principles of dazzle and disruptive camouflage developed during the First World War, Upmeyer illustrates this futuristic urban scenario. Pigeons and sparrows, both common features of city life, are presented camouflaged in front of a panoramic cityscape.
Facebook event

A bit About Microresidencies Article

I was invited by the Microresidency Network to write a text about Microresidencies. 

Murata San, the director of the Youkobo Art Space and the initiator of the Microresidency network called it a poem….and why not. 

Read the article here.


Istanbul Open Studio Days


This week I’ll be opening the doors of my studio for the annual Istanbul Open Studio Days. It is a chance to explore the hidden workshops, studios, initiatives, and art spaces, not normally open to the public. 

I will be showing some new projects from this year, the sculptures I created during my residency in Korea, and a few works-in-progress.

If you are in Istanbul, stop by! I would love to see you.
Friday Oct 2nd, 17:00 - 21:00
Saturday Oct 3rd, 14:00 – 20:00
Sunday Oct 4th, 14:00 – 20:00

Şair Ziya Paşa Caddesi, 3/4 Modern Palas
Şişhane, Beyoğlu, Istanbul 
Google Map link

I am number 23 on the map:


PyeongChang Biennale

I was invited back to South Korea for the occasion of the PyeongChang Biennale, a series of three exhibitions leading up to the 2018 Winter Olympic Games, which will be held in and around the Alpensia Ski Resort, nestled in the mountains of eastern Korea. The exhibition was held in several different buildings throughout the campus, my work was in the Ski House! 

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Telephone, the international art game

Inspired by a single piece of work, a video created by Jeevan Singh, I made this sculpture as my contribution to the Telephone international artis game. My work then was sent to two other artists, Nicholas Napoletano and Janet Van Fleet and who in turn created work inspired by my sculpture. 

My page on the Telephone website


Heres The Map, a truly beautiful infographic, you can follow each work all the way to the end of the paths. 


Living and Working in Flux, exhibition at the Gyeonggi Creation Center

An exhibition of the two, three, and four-dimensional works I've created during my residency at the Gyeonggi Creation Center.

Living and Working in Flux
Artists: Chang Hoon Lee, Renata Padovan, PJ Bruyniks, Julie Upmeyer
12 December 2014 - 17 February 2015

Gyeonggi Creation CenterSouth Korea


Artist in Resident at the Gyeonggi Creation Center

I'm an artist in resident for three whole months at the Gyeonggi Creation Center in South Korea! I'm exploring the relationship between two and three dimensions - through mathematical research, cultural investigation, and physical experimentation. As a side note, I bought a bottle of graphite powder and have been coating everything I can find. Lots to do. 


© Julie Upmeyer 2016