Il faut que les braises de Constantinople s’envolent jusqu’en Europe.
2020 - in progress.
Haig arrived in France after World War I and died without telling the story
of life during Ottoman times, in Kayseri and Constantinople. Before
he died, he gave a novel to his children, Un
poignard dans ce jardinby Vahé Katcha, in which he slipped a note telling them how a
particular passage in the novel reminded him of a specific memory of
his, when Ottoman officers came to his door to take him and his
family. Giving this book was to him a way to tell his experience of
the genocide, but also to share his vision of Constantinople.
2020, Topakian went to Istanbul in the footsteps of her grandfather
and the Topakian family: following the book’s descriptions of
Constantinople, she started conducting a genealogical investigation
while photographing modern-day Istanbul. Between the city of the book
and the one of the pictures, parallels could be drawn, situating
modern Turkey in continuation with its imperialist past.