I study how political violence and its legacies shape and are shaped by physical environments—including both "natural" and "built" ones—and their visualities. I currently work as Leverhulme Early Career Fellow at the European Institute, London School of Economics (LSE). My PhD, completed at University College London (UCL) in 2015, was an ethnography of the relationship between urban-architectural space and recent discourses of "confronting the past" in Turkey. Since 2012, I have designed and taught my own modules at various institutions in the UK. These include UCL's History of Art department and Syracuse University School of Architecture (London programme) where I taught on London's architectural histories of political conflict, violence and disaster, the Bartlett School of Architecture where I co-led the first-year undergraduate module in Architectural History & Theory, the University of Hertfordshire where I ran Critical & Contextual Studies teaching across all three levels of undergraduate study in Architecture and Interior Architecture. I previously worked as a researcher in Contemporary Turkish Studies at the European Institute, LSE.
My first English-language monograph, forthcoming from Syracuse University Press in late 2021, is titled Victims of Commemoration: The Architecture and Violence of "Confronting the Past" in Turkey. The book discusses grassroots campaigns for transforming Turkey’s sites of political violence into memorial museums and the mainstream responses they triggered in the early 2010s. It focuses especially on the site of an arson attack, which took place in 1993 in the central-eastern city of Sivas and which pioneered these campaigns. As part of my current fellowship, I have conducted fieldwork on the relationship between histories of violence and current practices around ecology and disaster resilience in Turkey. One of the various sections of this project received funding from the BA/Leverhulme Small Research Grants scheme and focused on a set of spatial-artistic practices, which, against the grain of the hitherto prevalent tendency of engaging with political violence through its toll on human victims, have recently set out to pursue this engagement through the more-than-human forces and scales of geography. Alongside conducting these projects, at LSE, I have been teaching the postgraduate courses "Turkey and Europe" (EU476) and "Imaging Violence, Imagining Europe" (EU486), the latter being a course that I designed from scratch.
I have acted as a peer reviewer for The International Journal of Heritage Studies, Urban Studies, Environment and Planning D: Society and Space, Political Geography, Ethnicities, British Journal of Middle Eastern Studies, Ethnopolitics, and the British Academy. In addition to my academic work, between 2008 and 2020, I wrote regularly for leading architecture and design magazines in Turkey, including a column for XXI.
My first book in Turkish was published in 2020 by Everest and is titled İklimin Estetiği: Antroposen Sanatı ve Mimarlığı Üzerine Denemeler [Climate Aesthetics: Essays on Anthropocene Art and Architecture].