Art Talks: Serra Tansel & Birhan Keskin

Bilsart is hosting Serra Tansel’s solo exhibition entitled “Heavens!” between May 02 – May 11.

Heavens! is Serra Tansel’s new video work produced during the artists’s residency inside former air raid shelter tunnels built for World War II in London. These subterranean tunnels that hosted 8,000 people during a blitz are currently rented by a company, Growing Underground, the first urban underground farm in the world, growing micro herbs under LED lights 33 metres below street level.

Serra Tansel constructed Heavens! around a real event that happened whilst she was working for Growing Underground and promoting their salads in an organic supermarket; a homeless person sampling the micro herbs and teasingly asking her “Will I go to heaven if I eat these herbs?”. The video is concerned with the relationships between different forms of sheltering and issues around it such as homelessness and humankind’s journey towards Earthlessness.


Serra Tansel (1989, İstanbul) graduated from BA Fine Art at Central Saint Martins, London in 2011. Some of the selected shows she has participated in are: Heavens!, Battersea Arts Centre, London (2019), Love and the Ocean, LUX Scotland’s guest-curated programme for Eden Court, selected by artist Frances Davis, Glasgow (2018), Billboard 8171, Annin Arts, London (2018), Not Seeing Anything group show, curated by Mari Spirito, Alt Bomonti, Istanbul (2017), Market Gallery group show, Glasgow (2016), Freundschaftsspiel Istanbul : Freiburg, Museum für Neue Kunst, Freiburg (2016), Artists’ Film Biennial: Selected by artist Ahmet Ögüt, ICA, London (2016), Sera Tansel Unlimited, noshowspace, London (2015), Dünya Döner (World Döner / Revolves) at Museum aan de Stroom, Antwerp (2015), Γ Λ Υ Κ Ι Α   Μ Ο Υ with Joanna Peace at Snehta, Athens (2015), Su İkramımızdır with Duval Timothy at Polistar, Istanbul (2014), Left Unsaid curated by Didem Yazıcı, Kreuzberg Pavillion, Berlin (2014). The collectives she is a part of are; Hayırlı Evlat with Gizem Karakaş and İpek Hamzaoğlu; Makkam with Alper Oruç, Daniela Nofal and Yamen Makdad and Bonnington Cafe that she joined in 2017.

“Heavens!” was produced with the support of SAHA and Arts Council.