Erdem Gunduz, also known as the “Standing Man,” is a performance artist who rose to prominence during the 2013 anti-government protests in Turkey. On June 17, after the
Turkish state issued a ban on demonstrations in Istanbul, Gunduz
stood silently on the sealed-off Taksim Square for more than six
hours, staring at an image of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, the nation’s founder. As Gunduz’s peaceful protest circulated on Twitter, other individuals began to emulate him. Turkish police tried
to provoke a response out of the motionless Gunduz; unfazed by such provocations, hundreds of protestors joined him,
becoming a powerful symbol of the protests.