Erdem Taşdelen: A naked bath Tote
A naked bath, 2022 is drawn from a series of monologue scripts developed by the artist Erdem Taşdelen. Each of these short scripts is narrated by a protagonist who describes a dream-like encounter with a stranger in which a moment of friction, animosity, or resentment occurs. Commissioned for the occasion of The Capilano Review’s 50th anniversary in conjunction with its Summer 2022 Issue.
20 x 17.5 inch oversize tote with bottom gusset in heavyweight natural cotton canvas
Erdem Taşdelen is a Turkish-Canadian artist who currently lives and works in Tkaronto/Toronto. Working in a range of media including installation, video, sound, and printed matter, his projects often draw from unique historical figures, events, and texts in order to build semi-fictional narratives that explore frameworks of political entanglement.
I was waiting in line outside the bakery and the guy in front of me took a long, slurpy sip from his disposable cup and said, “Mmm, soy good,” passionately announcing to the world that he was drinking a soy latte. I was trying to guess how old he was, observing him in a clandestine way and taking note of the semi-wrinkled skin under his stubble, the grey roots of his long, pink, greasy hair, the yellowed teeth . . . all these clues led me to the conclusion that he must be in his late 40s. He was sporting a typical raver look, if you know what I mean: baggy neon trousers, white platform sneakers, a lime wristband, and so on. I pulled out my phone and scrolled aimlessly between apps because his fidgeting was trickling in all directions and I wanted to avoid any potential contact. And then his gaze—I could feel it—paused on me. He was searching for something, someone to engage with, and likely knew I was using my phone as a shield. Please don’t get combative, I pleaded inwardly, please just let me get my loaf of bread without any aggression, please take your eyes off me, please go pick on someone else, please, not me. “Damn cold out today, gonna take a loooong naked bath as soon as I get home,” he said to no one in particular. A naked bath . . . How else do you take a bath, you bozo, I thought, is that how you hope to scandalize me? Then it was his turn to go inside the bakery, and there was no unpleasantness after all. I put my phone back in my pocket as soon as the door closed behind him, and then I saw that the sign on the door had changed now and it said that the place was a 24-hour laundromat.