Istanbul Modern has announced that it will remain open over the weekend and therefore during the second and third days of Eid, on August 1 and 2. It offers three separate exhibitions that can be visited with coronavirus precautions in place.
Istanbul Modern, the modern art museum in the cosmopolitan city that is home to a quarter of Turkey’s population, has announced that it will be open during Eid. It will only be closed on the first day, July 31, but will reopen its doors at the end of week for the second and third days of Eid which falls over the first two days of August. The museum will be closed on the Monday, as it is every start of the week, but will be back open to the public on Tuesday, August 4.
While a new museum is currently being built to house Istanbul Modern’s art, since May 2018, it has been staging exhibitions in its temporary space in Sishane, in the Beyoglu district. It reopened after the coronavirus lockdown on June 16, 2020, and is currently accepting visitors, albeit requiring them to adhere to necessary pandemic precautions. The museum recommends people reserve their visit online in order to avoid long queuing times on arrival.
The new collection exhibition
In the exhibition which presents the museum’s new collection, the Istanbul Modern has selected artwork from Turkey’s post-1950s period, as well as works that are based on nature and the environment.
On the second floor of the museum, contemporary art from previous years that includes painting, sculpture, video, installation and photography - all based on nature and the environment - is on display. On the floor above, abstract and figurative art from Turkey’s post-1950s abstract era are displayed in a chronological order.
The forty works of art from thirty different artists, as well as the two artistic collaborations, and all the museum’s creations spanning various eras, will make for first time viewing for a lot of visitors.
The artists being showcased in the exhibit are Kuzgun Acar, Haluk Akakce, Erol Akyavas, Tomur Atagok, Alper Aydın, Barbara – Zafer Baran, Bedri Baykam, Cihat Burak, Ergin Cavusoglu, Nejad Melih Devrim, Latifa Echakhch, Nes’e Erdok, Abidin Elderoglu, Ahmet Elhan, Tayfun Erdogmus, Bedri Rahmi Eyuboglu, Eren Eyuboglu, Kamil Fırat, Mehmet Guleryuz, Neset Gunal, Balkan Naci Islimyeli, Ihsan Cemal Karaburcak, Komet, :MentalKLINIK, Nusret Nurdan, Orhan Peker, Jennifer Steinkamp, Ziya Tacir, Canan Tolon, F. Tulin, Omer Uluc, Fahrelnissa Zeid.
‘Guests: Artists and Craftspeople’
Istanbul Modern’s International Artist Residency Program, supported by the Istanbul Development Agency (ISTKA), has brought together ten artists from different regions of the world to work together with the city’s local craftspeople under the framework of a museum for the first time.
The programme aims to promote Istanbul globally and increase its visibility at the same time. The guest artists have collaborated with local craftspeople and have focused on the artistic techniques of paper marbling, block-printing, embroidery and quilt making, as well as experimenting with metal masters and metal spinning.
According to the museum’s website, “The works in the exhibition address the relationship between craft, as in the manufacturing of a product in order to satisfy a need through skill of hand and talent, and art, as in the input of the artist producing his/her original idea as a means to add value to life.”
The residency program and its exhibition was curated by Oyku Ozsoy and Umit Mesci from Istanbul Modern’s curatorial staff, and comprises ten international artists’ works.The artists who have previously shown their work at international biennials and whose works are part of world- renowned museums’ and art institutions’ collections are: Faig Ahmed (Baku), Rana Begum (London), Benji Boyadgian (Jerusalem), Rodrigo Hernandez (Mexico City), Servet Kocyigit (Amsterdam), Outi Pieski (Utsjoki and Numminen), Randi & Katrine (Copenhagen), Wael Shawky (Alexandria and Philadelphia) and Jorinde Voigt (Berlin).
Portraits: Lutfi Ozkok
Istanbul Modern is showcasing the Turkish photographer Lutfi Ozkok’s photography. The artist has, since the 1950s, captured artists and literary figures from Turkey and from other parts of the world. The exhibition invites the viewer to contemplate the different meanings portrait photography represent, as well as considering how they help us bear witness to the passing of time.
The collection includes over eighty portraits by Ozkok, who has spent most of his life in Stockholm, Sweden, ranging from the 1950s to the 1990s. Among these photographs of leading artistic and literary figures from the post-World War II era, are twenty-four Nobel laureates - in all, the exhibition offers an overview of a “highly transformative time”.
Demet Yildiz, Istanbul Modern’s Photography Gallery Manager, has curated the show, offering texts, objects and documents to accompany the photographs to reveal the relationship between the photographer and the subject. The exhibition, the museum website notes, “describes a period through the artist's personal story.”