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Everbody’s Atatürk is a visual journey through everyday life in contemporary Turkey. For this long-term project, Mine Dal, more
a photographer born in Istanbul and now based in Switzerland, travelled widely in Turkey, looking for traces of the protean presence of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk (1881–1938), the founder of the Republic of Turkey. The upshot is a multi-faceted portrait of Turkish society, for the symbolic figure of Atatürk permeates virtually every area of present-day social and public life there: at the tailor’s, butcher’s or greengrocer’s shop, at restaurants and schools, at the hairdresser’s and the shoe store—just about anywhere you look, you’ll find Atatürk. Even more than eighty years after the death of the founder of the modern state, his memory is still alive and widely revered. Atatürk undertook far-reaching social, legal and economic reforms to modernize and fundamentally redefine Turkey based on Western models. Mine Dal’s photographs show not only “everybody’s Atatürk”, but also day-to-day life in big cities as well as in Anatolian villages and coastal and mountain regions. This painstaking wide-ranging compilation of unique documentary material also reflects the Turkish people’s allegiance to an openminded, cosmopolitan Turkey.
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