A bit of gallery talk …
I spent this afternoon in the most amazing contemporary gallery space in Istanbul (that’s at least how I felt when I was there). The gallery is called .artSümer . Since 2009 it is located in one of the most unbelievable buildings of the Istanbul art scene of the last 50 years in the Beyoğlu district. Set on Istiklal Caddesi in the historic Rumeli Han, an ‘orientation-deforming mystical place’ (as they call it on their website) ‘that reflects all of the typical characteristics of arcades as a collective body’, artSümer is situated right on the top floor (6th floor, a lift is available, however, I would rather recommend taking the stairs, just to enhance the experience of the building and the final entering of the gallery space – it IS an experience). The gallery surely utilises the space without turning it into a white cube. The owner and founder of the gallery is the most wonderful Aslı Sümer who has a small but very well-selected group of contemporary Turkish artists. Please check out her website: www.artsumer.com .
And this is what you get when you reach the top floor of this late 19th century building … By then you will also have walked through a street bazaar, passed artists’ studios, an Indian dance/performance school, a performing art space called Haymatlos – it couldn’t be more obscure … And then you reach the gallery, where Jazz tunes are played in the background and suddenly one could be in New York or Paris – or Istanbul with a view over Beyoğlu’s rooftops and the Bosphorus … Such a unique and exquisite setting!
And as I am on my afternoons spent in galleries, yet another one – Sunday, actually – I spent in a very new photography gallery in Çukurcuma – EDISYON.
The gallery only opened on Thursday last week and is run by three young Turkish guys whose intention was to set up a space that is not simply a white gallery but more like a shop, a meeting place. They focus exclusively on young photographers (mainly Turkish, and most of them non-professionals), print and frame their works and market them in their gallery. EDISYON is only the second photography gallery in Istanbul! That way they support the young emerging photography scene in Turkey which can build on a very rich history but was slightly abandoned over the last decades and is still looking for a strong and supportive platform. The prices for works by their photographers are very reasonable, within a range of 100 TL to 1000 TL (Euro 50-500). Please check out their website: http://www.edisyonlar.com/
And on that note, just quickly, Contemporary, Istanbul’s 5th international contemporary art fair, will take place from 25th-28th November 2010 and the theme is “Istanbul: The New Art Destination”!!!