The Flag


The Flag is the second part of Köken Ergun’s video series about the state-controlled national day ceremonies of the Turkish Republic. Shot during the April 23rd Children’s Day, which marks the establishment of the new Turkish Parliament, and the official demise of the Ottoman Empire back in 1920, this split-screen film documents a pompous patriotic performance devised by elders to be performed by children. Hosted by the mayor and governor of Istanbul, with the participation of a high ranking general, the ceremony features poems and oaths read out loud by primary schools’ students, while patriotism becomes a hard-lined nationalism. One of them; The Flag is recited passionately by a girl who vows to “destroy the nest of any bird who doesn’t salute [her country’s] flag in flight” and “dig the grave of anyone who doesn’t look at the flag the way [she does].”
Screening Schedule

No physical screenings scheduled.

Direction: Köken Ergun
Script: Köken Ergun
Cinematography: Köken Ergun
Editing: Köken Ergun
Sound: Köken Ergun
Producers: Köken Ergun
Format: HD
Color: Color
Production Country: Türkiye
Production Year: 2007
Duration: 9'
Contact: Köken Ergun
Awards/Distinctions: Tiger Award for Short Film – Rotterdam IFF 2007, Onda Curta Award – IndieLisboa IFF, Special Jury Prize – Dokufest 2007

Köken Ergun

Köken Ergun (born 1976, Istanbul) is a Turkish artist/ filmmaker with a background in performing arts. After working with American theatre director Robert Wilson, Ergun became involved with video art and film. His works have been exhibited internationally at institutions including Documenta 14, Paris Triennale, Jakarta Biennial, Kathmandu Triennale, SALT, Garage Moscow, Para-Site Hong Kong, and Casino Luxembourg. His films received several awards at film festivals, including the Tiger Award for Best Short Film at the 2007 Rotterdam Film Festival and a Special Mention at the 2013 Berlinale. Ergun’s films are included in public art collections of institutions such as the Centre Pompidou, Museum of Contemporary Art Athens, Stadtmuseum Berlin, and Kadist Foundation.


2006 I, Soldier (short doc)
2007 The Flag (short doc)
2013 Ashura (short doc)
2015 Young Turks (short doc)
2018 Heroes (doc)