My Turkish Gay Porn

concept, performance & installation: River Lin

28. September 2017
at PASAJ space , Istanbul
As the presentation of the 
research-based residency program Off-Site Istanbul 


My Turkish Gay Porn 

When I arrived in Istanbul for the very first time, the culture of Turkish bath (hammam) has immediately aroused my curiosity of how to be gay, underground, in this Muslim-majority country.


The research on the underground Turkish gay life has brought me to different hammam houses almost everyday during my stay. Some facilities are historical some are modern, and some services are gay some are purely normal. However, they are all sexual and erotic. The idea of a man/woman washing another man/woman’s body is basically gay, despite they could be actually straight. 

Local gay men, in the steam room, might take action subtly and closeted men are even more constrained, until they all come into the dark sauna room. Hammam is then live gay porn between the hard and soft, where visual and physical libido have found its meeting point. 


The little exploration of hammam inspires this performance piece My Turkish Gay Porn. In a room, photos related to the labels "turkish", "muslim" and "gay" are juxtaposed and displayed. River Lin 
is in this room durationally. Audience members are invited to enter the room, cutting and smear a piece of butter on his body and in conversation with the artist.

The duration of performance and dimension of the installation are variable.