This program is part of the Night Flights series, presented by the ICP Lab. The ICP Lab is a new home for visual storytellers to experiment with technology and create interactive and immersive experiences.

The Parallel State is a multi-layered investigation that took place in Turkey from 2012 to 2016. Turkey is a complex story to tell, all too often reduced to simple narratives and visual cliché. Guy Martin has assembled a body of work that chronicles the massive and often violent events unfolding on the ground. Running parallel to this, he has documented the fictional world of Turkish TV and soap opera sets that mirror Turkey’s recent history. Adding this additional layer has enabled him to delve deeper into the story and reveal the powerful relationship between TV, computer screens, and people’s actions on the street. When witnessing tragic events, he was left wondering whether anything had in fact not been carefully stage-managed. Physical and virtual worlds overlay, conflict, betray, and manipulate each other.

Martin’s work transcends Turkey and acts as a timely, dark, and paranoid vision for what happens when men in power implement divisive narratives, dividing the population with fearful stories and creating a vacuum of the truth-based reality.

In this program, Martin guides the audience through a multi-layered experience designed to illuminate the different pathways through which he investigated the troubled political and social state of Turkey, and by implication, the possibilities for performing similar work in other nations and states around the world.

This is a free event, but please register in advance.


Guy Martin is a British documentary photographer currently in the South West of England. Based in Istanbul from 2012 to 2016, he produced a long-term project on the rise of Turkish soft power and the complex new identities in the Turkish Republic titled The Parallel State. The project has received much critical success, including the Project Launch Award at CENTER, Santa Fe, New Mexico. The work was supported by grants from the Magnum Emergency Fund and the Saint-Brieuc Photoreporter Festival. In 2017, The Parallel State was the winner of the inaugural Viewbook Transformations Grant for a forthcoming multi-layered digital version of the project. In 2017, Rencontres d’Arles installed The Parallel State in its first major exhibition as part of the New Discovery Award. In spring 2018, Gost books will produce a publication of the project. Martin is a member of Panos Pictures, and his print sales and special commissions are with NinteenSixtyEight. Martin sits on the advisory board of the Rory Peck Trust, an organization dedicated to the safety and wellbeing of freelance journalists. The Parallel State has been featured in Art in America, Lens Culture, the British Journal of Photography, Time, and Huck.

ICP’s Center for Visual Culture and accompanying programs have been made possible through the generous support of The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Additional support is provided by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council and The Bern Schwartz Family Foundation.
TOP IMAGE: © Guy Martin