Contemporary İstanbul, one of the world’s leading art fairs, receives art lovers for the 17th time this year. The fair, which opens for previews on September 17-18 and to general visits on September 19-22, includes 66 contemporary art galleries. Contemporary İstanbul, which will take place on the shores of the Golden Horn with magnificent views and the historical ambiance of the vibrant Tersane neighbourhood, will welcome its guests with a full program this year.
The fair, which Tersane is hosting for the second time, is taking place with 22 countries participating this year. Nearly 1500 works from over 550 artists from different countries will be open to visitors within the scope of the fair. Galleries such as 193 Gallery (Paris), Wadström Tönnheim (Marbella), Malmö, Hestia (Belgrade), Dedicace (Tbilisi), Mucciaccia Contemporary(Rome) will take place in Contemporary İstanbul for the first time. In addition to the participation of different countries, Türkiye’s rising contemporary art formations will also take part in the fair and reflect the cultural atmosphere of the country across their stands. These initiatives include Antalya Are Projects, Bursa İmalat-hane, İstanbul Noks Art Space and Viable, Tiblisi Kvareli Foundation for Contemporary Art, Diyarbakır Loading Art Space, Eskişehir OMM and Video-Ist from Balıkesir.
The Yard Exhibition
Among the highlights of the fair is “The Yard”, an exhibition which returns with its second edition. The open-space exhibition, which includes 22 works consisting of sculptures and installations, is located in different spots in Tersane, İstanbul and spreads over a wide area. The exhibition includes works by artists such as Anke Eilergerhard, Luis Cera Ardan Özmenoğlu, Ayla Turan, Bedri Baykam, Erdil Yaşaroğlu, Ergin Cavuşoğlu, Güvenç Özel, Halil Altındere, Kemal Tufan, Isaac Chong Wai, Ingravi Desa, Itamar Gov, Martian Tabakov, Osman Dinç, Renée Levi, Sergen Şehitoğlu, Stijn Ank.
The Yard section also features Canan Tolon with her “Limbo” exhibition, which consists of works in which she discusses the cycle of life and describes the contrast between life and death. The work of Ayşe Erkmen, one of the foremost Turkish visual artists, known for her space-oriented works, will also be displayed in this area. One of the important works of the open space is Halil Altındere’s sculpture called “Security Tree (Güvenlik Ağacı)”. The sculpture, which is a metaphor for the cult of surveillance, was conceived as a reflection of what trees look like when they are in bloom.
Other Voices, Other Rooms
The exhibition of “Other Voices, Other Rooms” by artist Clement Valla is among the most special works of the fair. It draws our attention to the mysterious aspect of nature, with which we are intertwined every day, by using the dynamics of digital art. Curated by Hasan Bülent Kahraman, the exhibition reveals objects, moments and situations that we thought we see or have never seen.
Contemporary İstanbul Foundation – Artist in Residence Program
In the Artist in Residence (Guest Artist Program) section organised by the Contemporary İstanbul Foundation, scrap and waste materials — selected by five artists — appear as works of art. The materials selected from 27 tons of scrap were processed in the special studio set up for the program; in the hands of artists applying different principles, they were transformed into a beautiful selection. Artifacts created as a result of the work carried out with the theme of upcycling by Chiara de Rocchi, Emrullah Örünklü, Koray Tokdemir, Nermin Ülker and Songül Girgin will be exhibited to visitors at Tersane İstanbul within the fair.
“CI Dialogues”, another program organized by the foundation, is also part of the event. The spoken word program, designed by Marc Olivier Wahler, who worked as the Art Director at the fair in 2015-2016, will be organised as two separate panels under the rubric of “Corporate and Commercial Art Spaces of Today and Tomorrow”. Gallery and museum managers will be among the panel participants.
Art Tour for Students
This year, Contemporary İstanbul will offer a contemporary art tour for students of İstanbul Technical University Department of Architecture. The students, who will encounter unique works of art in historical architecture on the shores of the Golden Horn, will also have the opportunity to meet artists.
Sea Voyages Begin as of September 17
For those who want to visit Contemporary İstanbul, there are two dedicated excursions that will be carried out free of charge, departing from both sides of the city. In addition, the Sea Taxi option for transportation to the Tersane neighbourhood will also be active for visitors between 17-22 September, for an additional fee.
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