I Won’t Be Sad If You Forget Me

December 2, 2021



"The Boys" from the series "Unutursan Darılmam"; September 12, 2016.

"Unutursan Darılmam" (I Won't Be Sad If You Forget Me, 2019 - Ongoing) is one of my long-term stories that is nearing its completion. I thought this would be a great occasion to talk about the body of work.

I'm going to admit something first: the series does not have a written project statement yet. This is mainly because whenever I sat and attempted to write something, words just wouldn't come together. I've been using this blurb to explain it:

A long-term story about İstanbul, the signs of being left behind, and dealing with loneliness.

I did answer a question about "Unutursan Darılmam" in an interview; but instead of explaining what the work is about, I talked about the background of the story. I also gave another interview (Italian), solely focused on the series, and I don't think I did a good job there, either. So far, I only managed to explain it well to one friend, but verbally.

So, I'm going to use this post as my first draft; let's go.

Acıyı hisset, benimle dans et!*

— From She Past Away's 2012 song Ritüel (Ritual).

The past is a strange place; we are dealing with a dark, distorted dream. It's 2019.

The author seeks melancholic moments; serene, dreary, and sometimes chilling — often restless, but also loving. One rule: no scene will be staged. But also, the body of work documents nothing.

In this universe, nothing happens.

Because we are in a room; in fact, we have been here for the past twelve months. On the rare occasion we are taken outside, we start to see things (we mostly see outside the room): hand-picked moments that portray a deep depression. The negative extreme of bipolar disorder, to be more precise.

Now, the city (İstanbul) is the room.

We are following a sequence; the sequence is important, because that is the only thing that helps us navigate the story. No text, other than the Turkish title**, is written.

The author's symbiotic but also ambivalent relationship with the city is apparent. We are never certain that if he accepts or rejects the reality it offers.

We are following our only clue: “If [someone, or maybe, something] is being forgotten, who will not be sad? Who is uttering these words?”

We are left with a guess. The author must be going somewhere: perhaps, leaving the room. It's 2021.

* Feel the pain, dance with me!
** I Won't Be Sad If You Forget Me