Deniz Üster

Deniz Uster is a Scotland-based (b.1981-Istanbul) multidisciplinary artist researcher. She has a BA on Drawing and Painting from Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University, an MA on Visual Arts and Visual Communication Design from Sabanci University and an MFA on Visual Arts from Glasgow School of Arts. She has previously presented her work at ICA (London), CCA (Glasgow), !f Istanbul Independent Film Festival and Sabanci Museum (Istanbul) among others. She received awards and commissions internationally towards residencies and production of new work and exhibited in South Korea, UAE, Hong Kong, Ireland, France, Netherlands, Italy, Chile, Azerbaijan, Finland, Germany, UK and Turkey.

Spanning across geological and scientific inquiry, Deniz Uster’s art practice is permeated by anthropological and historical research to form pluralistic social narratives, using science fiction as her primary discipline. A fictional shift in nature within these ‘filmic’ narratives forms the foundation for alternative social structures, cultures, economic systems, futures and histories.

Uster playfully creates ethical conundrums, particularly within the context of space exploration where justice beyond life on Earth is the central debate. The ambivalence these ethical conundrums trigger, reveals the performative aspect of her work. She invites us to imagine a collectivity that exceeds multispecies approaches; to include not only microorganisms but also elements and forces, from water to minerals. Hence materials and processes convey particular importance in Uster’s work.

To incorporate into her sculptures and films, Uster often pursues specific objects and materials through her research which bear certain histories. These objects range from dropped leaves of a tree grown while in orbit on the Moon, to rocks NASA sampled due to their resemblance to the geology of Mars; from dust gathered following two explosions in a Glasgow factory, to waste collected for its war-time memory retained within… These objects are then layered and included in the artist's narrative.

Uster has also developed special techniques borrowing materials from the construction industry merged with traditional crafts methods. She continues to create cinematic speculative-fiction narratives through miniature dioramas, installations, films, drawings and sculptural headpieces under the brand name OTHERSCAPES.