Culture & Arts

Fayza Al-Khazen Beirut’s Learned Princess

Article: Hasan Mert Kaya Photo: Ahmet Bilal Arslan Date: Thursday, 03 July 2014

FAYZA AL-KHAZEN IS FROM ONE OF LEBANON’S OLDEST FAMILIES. RESEARCHER, PUBLISHER, COLLECTOR AND PIANIST, AL-KHAZEN’S LIFE IS A PERFECT FAIRY TALE…

If I was told to choose a city to live in outside of Istanbul, it would be Beirut hands down. When I go there with my esteemed mentor, collector Erol Makzume, as a reference, the doors of the city’s intellectual community open to me instantly. We settle into our fashionable boutique hotel in the city center, make a mini tour of the city and set out for our appointment with Fayza al-Khazen. The address is in the Raouché district, better known now as the Pigeon Rocks, one of Beirut’s most beautiful and prestigious neighborhoods with a magnificent view of the Mediterranean. I ring the bell of a house from the 1950’s in pastel pink, a two-story house with high ceilings, multiple rooms and a spacious balcony. Escorted by the Filipino maid who lets us in, we go straight to the living room. Sunlight sifting in through the windows in a sparkling Mediterranean play of light makes the ambience of this interior even more attractive. The walls are covered with antique Ottoman artifacts, Beykoz, Iznik and Kütahya ceramics. Yıldız porcelain cups with sleeves adorn the 18th century French cabinets. Piled randomly with sheet music, the well-worn piano is clearly not just a part of the decor.

Sultans Who Composed Waltzes

Article: Dr. Emre Aracı Date: Thursday, 03 July 2014

THE OTTOMAN SULTANS WERE NOT INDIFFERENT TO WESTERN CLASSICAL MUSIC. INDEED, THEY NOT ONLY LISTENED TO IT, THEY ALSO CONTRIBUTED TO IT AS COMPOSERS.

When Sultan Abdülaziz arrived in London in 1867 as the guest of Queen Victoria he was greeted by the Queen’s military bands playing La Gondole Barcarolle, one of His Imperial Majesty’s own compositions. The European press at the time was rather surprised that the Ottoman Sultan had composed such a lyrical gondolier song and that his music, along with one of his other compositions, Invitation à la Valse, was published in piano score in Italy. 

Traveling Biennial

Date: Wednesday, 02 July 2014

ONE OF EUROPE’S MOST IMPORTANT CONTEMPORARY ART BIENNIALS, MANIFESTA IS BRINGING CONTEMPORARY ARTISTS TOGETHER FOR THE 10TH TIME.

Launched with the idea of creating a contemporary art platform for the Eastern European countries and first mounted at Rotterdam in 1994, Manifesta is taking place this year June 28 to October 31. Manifesta, which was inspired by the transformation the countries of Eastern Europe underwent between 1989 and 1991, aims this year to showcase the changes that have taken place in art and ociety since the Berlin Wall came down. Without a fixed venue and held in a different country each time, this year’s biennial is at the State Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg.

You will find a complete list of all participating national and international contemporary artists, among them Vadim Fishkin, Elena Kovylina, Tatzu Nishi and Thomas Hirschhorn, on the festival website, manifesta10.org

One Hundred Years Of Turkish Cinema

Article: Burçak Evren Date: Thursday, 29 May 2014

WHEN FUAT UZKINAY WAS SHOOTING “THE DEMOLITION OF THE RUSSIAN MONUMENT AT AYASTEFANOS” ON NOVEMBER 14, 1914, NEITHER HE NOR THOSE AROUND HIM WERE AWARE THAT THEY WERE LAUNCHING TURKISH CINEMA. REGARDED LATER AS THE FIRST TURKISH FILM, IT NOW SYMBOLIZES THE BIRTH OF THE NATION’S FILM INDUSTRY.

CAMERAS IN TURKEY
Cameramen working for the Lumière Brothers, who had staged the world’s first public screening of a moving picture at the Grand Café in Paris on December 28, 1895, filmed the Golden Horn and the Galata Bridge from the water in 1896, putting their signature on the first film shot in Turkey. The first public screening of a motion picture in Turkey also took place in 1896. From its inception in the Ottoman Empire, cinema gained instant popularity and soon became the cheapest and only form of public entertainment.

THE EARLY YEARS (1896-1922)
In its early years, cinema made use of the already existing venues and human resources of the theaters. As interest grew, films were first shown in coffeehouses and nightclubs, later moving in to the theaters where they were shown for entertainment between the acts of stage plays. Sigmund Weinberg, who is credited with bringing cinema to Turkey, opened the country’s first movie theater, called the Pathé, at Beyoğlu in 1908. It was followed by the Orientaux, which opened in Pera (Beyoğlu) in 1911, and the Central and Ideal, both of which opened in the same area in 1912.

THE DEMOLITION OF AYASTEFANOS (1914)
To record it for posterity, the Ottoman government decided to film the demolition of the monument erected by the Russians at Ayastefanos (Present-day Yeşilköy), the farthest point to which they had penetrated during the Russo-Turkish War of 1876-77.  It was essential that the film be shot by a Turk, so Fuat Uzkınay undertook to do it. Shooting the film on November 14, 1914, he became the first director in Turkish cinema. This date is also regarded as the start of the Turkish film industry.

THE FIRST FEATURE-LENGTH FILM (1916)
The first official movie theater in Turkey was set up by Enver Pasha in 1915 and called the MOSD (Central Army Cinematography Office). Sigmund Weinberg was placed in charge of it and Fuat Uzkınay appointed as his assistant.
This institution made a series of propaganda films aimed at rehabilitating the Ottomans’ “sick man” image. Concurrently, Weinberg made his first feature-length films, Leblebici Horhor (1916) and Himmet Ağa’nın İzdivacı/The Marriage of Himmet Aga (1916), but the latter was never completed due to the war.

THE FIRST COMMERCIAL FILMS
All of MOSD’s film equipment was turned over to the Association of National Defense during the occupation of Istanbul at the end of World War I. To generate some revenue, the society commissioned two films to Sedat Semavi: Casus/The Spy (1917), a spy film set in the First World War, and Pençe/The Claw (1917), about an illicit love affair. These were the Turkish film industry’s first feature-length commercial films.

THE ERA OF THE THEATER ACTORS (1922-1938)
Muhsin Ertuğrul, the sole director in this period when Turkish cinema was in its infancy, set up the Kemal Film Studio, which made A Love Tragedy in Istanbul (1922), a film based on a real-life incident. Later he tried to adapt Yakup Kadri Karaosmanoğlu’s novel Nur Baba (1922) to the screen, but the film, which led to tension already during the shooting, was later released under the title “The Bosphorus Mystery”.

WOMEN IN CINEMA
Muhsin Ertuğrul’s third film, The Daughter of Smyrna (1923), was based on Halide Edip Adıvar’s novel of the same name and dealt with the theme of Turkey’s War of Independence. When a woman was needed to play in this highly patriotic film, an ad was placed in one of the Istanbul dailies, and Bedia Muvahhit, one of the two women who responded to the ad and played in the film, later became one of the doyennes of Turkish theater.

THE TRANSITION (1938-1950)
The Second World War broke out during this period of fresh initiatives in the Turkish film industry, and only 14 films were made between 1939 and 1944. During this dormant period, cinema in Turkey fell into the clutches of the U.S. film industry, which dominated the market. Due to the war, American films made it to the Middle East via Egypt, paving the way to a flood of Egyptian films in Turkey.

THE FIRST CARTOON
The quest to find actors without a theater background, the shift from synchronous dialogue to dubbing, and the first experiment with animation, Evvel Zaman İçinde, all occurred in this period. Among the other gains of the day we can site the rapid growth in the number of new movie theaters, new production studios and societies devoted to cinema.

THE CINEMATOGRAPHERS (1950-1960)
This period began with the film Strike the Whore, an adaptation of Halide Edip Adıvar’s novel by Lütfî Akad in 1949. Akad became a pioneering director, a “masterless master”, in films like In the Name of the Law (1952), Murderous City (1954) and White Handkerchief (1955), which he, unlike theater directors, shot in a cinematic concept characterized by lively and dynamic cinematography. Another master, Atıf Yılmaz seized on the popular novels of the day, making films like The Sob (1953) and The Girl Who Watched the Mountain (1955) as well as The Fallow Deer (1959), in which Yılmaz Güney acted, and This Land’s Children (1959). Another master of this period was Metin Erksan, who prepared the ground for the emergence of the directors who would have an impact on Turkish cinema in years to come, figures who, in a sense, became the founding directors of Turkish cinema and determined its course in subsequent periods.

THE GOLDEN AGE (1960-1967)
Starting in 1960, Turkish cinema turned to films with social content, films that dealt with events previously considered to be taboo in the cinema. For the first time, the problems of the rural population were taken up and dealt with in terms of property ownership. Low in number but high in quality, a number of masterpieces appeared in this period. Metin Erksan won the Golden Bar, the biggest prize ever captured by Turkish cinema up to that time, at the 1964 Berlin Film Festival for his film Susuz Yaz/Dry Summer.

THE RISE OF YEŞİLÇAM (1967-1974)
In a productive period for Turkish cinema in terms of quantity, the number of films shot annually rose from 200 in 1967 to 300 in 1972, and Turkey became the fourth largest producer of films after the U.S., India and Hong Kong. At the same time, this period was one in which melodramas on the theme poor girl-rich man or poor man-rich girl gained currency and the role of the star in cinema came to the fore as the number of movie theaters, producers and viewing audiences saw its biggest rise yet.

THE LOST YEARS (1974-1978)
As the cheapest and sole form of public entertainment, cinema was now trumped by television, which came into Turkish homes at the start of the seventies, and film production fell sharply by as much as eighty percent as audiences dwindled.
As movie theaters closed down one by one, filmmakers, who were seeking to bring audiences back, found a way out by turning to films that could not be shown on TV.

NATIONAL CINEMA
National Cinema movements, one led by Halit Refiğ and Metin Erksan, the other pioneered by Yücel Çakmaklı, emerged in the difficult conditions of this period and started producing films, albeit few in number.

THE NEW TURKISH CINEMA (1978-1986)
Making social content films that reflected the socio-political climate of the time, young filmmakers turned to mainly youthful audiences, who were caught between television and cinema. Political issues focusing on the rural sector, the working class and the aftermath of the September 12th military takeover were dealt with as realistically as censorship would allow. Erden Kıral depicted cotton pickers in his films The Canal (1978) and On Fertile Lands (1979), and the clash of different cultures in A Season in Hakkari, which won four prizes at the Berlin Film Festival. Ali Özgentürk depicted honor killings in Hazal (1979), and the drama of a father struggling to educate his son in The Horse (1981), while Korhan Yurtsever depicted the conflict between landowners and farm workers in The Bad Spirits of the Euphrates (1977).

THE YILMAZ GÜNEY MARK
The films written by Yılmaz Güney in prison left their mark on this period. Among them, The Herd (1978) and The Enemy (1979), directed by Zeki Ökten, and Yol/The Way (1982), by Şerif Gören, took the Palme d’Or at Cannes along with the Costa Gavras film, Lost.

THE VIDEO INVASION
Hit by a video invasion in those years, the film industry turned to making cheap, low-brow video films. Color television and the rise of the private channels further fueled the crisis in the industry.

THE MAJORS (1987-1994)
Turkish cinema suffered its biggest crisis of all in the eighties. Films on political themes by a small number of directors had to compete at the box office with big American productions. The successful ones among them, Ertem Eğilmez’s last film, Arabesque (1988), Serif Gören’s The American (1993), Mustafa Altıoklar’s Istanbul Beneath My Wings (1995), Sinan Çetin’s Berlin in Berlin (1992), Yavuz Turgul’s Eşkıya/The Bandit (1996) and Gani Müjde’s Kahpe Bizans (1999), kindled renewed hope for the future.

THE INDEPENDENT FILMMAKERS (1994 to the present)
The difference between these filmmakers and the young filmmakers of earlier periods is that today’s filmmakers incur myriads to become producers and scriptwriters, even actors and cameramen, portraying their own stories and situations and using unknown actors in a cinematic language unique unto themselves with no thought of commercial gain. Zeki Demirkurbuz and Yeşim Ustaoğlu are among the leading directors of this period.

THE INDEPENDENT DIRECTORS
Turkey’s independent filmmakers have achieved huge success, garnering close to ten times as many awards at the international film festivals as were won by Turkish cinema in the previous 85 years. Foremost among them are Derviş Zaim (Somersault in a Coffin - 1996, Dot - 2007), Serdar Akar (On Board - 1999, Offside - 2000), Handan İpekçi (Dad Is in the Army - 1994, Big Man, Little Love - 2001), Reha Erdem (Oh, Moon! - 1998, Times and Winds - 2006, Cosmos - 2010), Reis Çelik (Işıklar Sönmesin - 1996),Night of Silence - 2012), Ümit Ünal  (9 - 2001, Istanbul Tales - 2004), Yılmaz Erdoğan (The Butterfly’s Dream - 2012), Ahmet Uluçay (Boats Out of Watermelon Rinds - 2004), Semih Kaplanoğlu (Egg - 2007, Milk - 2008, and Honey, 2010, which won the Golden Bear at the Berlin Film Festival), Tayfun Pirselimoğlu (In Nowhere Land - 2002), Semir Aslanyürek (Eve Giden Yol - 2006), and Özcan Alper (Autumn - 2008).

WHO WAS SIGMUND WEINBERG?
The one and only person in Turkey who knew what cinema was in the first half of the 19th century and was able to discern its future was Sigmund Weinberg, a Rumanian citizen who sold film and photography equipment in Beyoğlu and later went into the filmmaking business. Fuat Uzkınay learned cinema from Weinberg and began staging educational film screenings for students at the school where he was employed, thus becoming the second person in Turkey to know about cinema.

THE FIRST TURKISH FILMMAKERS: THE MANAKİ BROTHERS
Turkish filmmaking was born on November 14, 1914, the day that Fuat Uzkınay shot his film, “The Demolition of the Russian Monument at Ayastefanos”. Nevertheless, there are films that were shot earlier, among them the films that were made starting in 1905 by the Manaki brothers, Yanaki (1878-1954) and Milton (1882-1964), the first Balkan filmmakers. One of those films is Sultan Reşat’s Visit to Monastir, made in 1911.
Film historians suggest that it would be more correct to regard the Manaki brothers as the first Turkish filmmakers since Macedonia was then part of the Ottoman Empire and the Manakis were naturally Ottoman citizens. The brothers always stamped the name of Turkey on their photographs and on the canisters of all the films they made.

PIONEERS OF MELODRAMA
Lütfî Akad produced original examples of the melodrama genre in his films, Hudutların Kanunu/The Law of the Border (1967), about the lives of smugglers on the border, and Vesikalı Yarim (1968). Atıf Yılmaz, who produced a political critique of the previous period in his Dolandırıcılar Şahı/King of the Swindlers (1961), tells the tragicomic story of an innocent, young girl who comes to the big city to become an actress in his Ah Güzel İstanbul/O Beautiful Istanbul (1966).

THE GOLDEN AGE
The golden age from 1960 to 1967 simultaneously ushered in an “age of enlightenment” in Turkish cinema. The Cinémathèque and Club 7 (later the State Film Archive) sprang up in this period, when the now long-standing national festivals, the Antalya Golden Orange and the Adana Golden Boll festivals, also had their inception. Thanks to these and other organizational efforts in cinema, developments in the literature were also among the positive developments of the time...

ŞENER ŞEN
Şener Şen is one of the most unconventional comedians - perhaps the first of his kind - in Turkish cinema. While most comedy types are naive and honest fumbling bumpkins, Şen is a comedy actor who was loved and rose to prominence for being the exact opposite, namely, a devious, double-dealing rogue. Following his success with Kemal Sunal in Outrageous Class, this fabulous duo came to audiences in films like The Foster Brothers, Şabanoğlu Şaban, Tosun Paşa, Kibar Feyzo, Davaro and The King of the Street Cleaners. Playing character roles, Şener Şen have had his name written in gold letters in Turkish cinema with films as The Bandit (1996), Lovelorn (2005), For Love and Honor (2007), Hunting Season (2010)..

HAKKARİ’DE BİR MEVSİM (A SEASON IN HAKKARİ)
This film, directed by Erden Kiral with a script adapted by Onat Kutlar from Ferit’s Edgü’s novel “O”, poetically depicts an intellectual who spends his military service serving as a teacher in the eastern province of Hakkari where he is based, his relationship with the alien culture he encounters there, and the inner journey it takes him on.

YILMAZ GÜNEY
One of Turkish cinema’s first actor-directors to gain international recognition, Güney, who started out in cinema as an actor in Atıf Yılmaz’s 1958 film Bu Vatanın Çocukları/This Land’s Children, got into directing as well in 1966 with his film At Avrat Silah/Horse, Woman and Gun, earning a reputation as the “Ugly King” in a series of films he shot one after the other. Surging to fame with his film Umut/Hope in 1970, he later directed Acı/Pain, Ağıt/Elegy, Baba/The Father, Umutsuzlar/The Hopeless One, Arkadaş/Friend and Duvar/The Wall. Forced to spend most of his life in prison, Güney nevertheless wrote the scripts for films like Sürü/The Herd, Düşman/The Enemy and Yol/The Way, which won top prizes at the international film festivals, and became the first Turkish director to be internationally recognized in world cinema..

SEPTEMBER 12TH FILMS
The first examples of the films known in Turkish cinema as the “September 12th films” because they dealt with the repercussions of the September 12th military takeover in 1971 began emerging at the end of the 1980’s. Zeki Alasya’s "The Thorny Way" (1986), Sinan Çetin’s "Prenses" (1986), Şerif Gören’s Sen Türkülerini Söyle (1986), Zeki Ökten’s Ses (1986), Zülfü Livaneli’s "Fog" (1988) and Tunç Başaran’s "Don’t Let Them Shoot the Kite" (1989) all bear witness to this period.

NURİ BİLGE CEYLAN
Following his 1995 film Koza/Cocoon, in 1999 Nuri Bilge Ceylan completed Mayıs Sıkıntısı/May Clouds, which walked off with big prizes at the national and international film festivals. Uzak took the Grand Prize of the Jury and the award for best actor at the Cannes Film Festival in 2003, İklimler/The Climate the Fibresci prize at Cannes in 2006, and Üç Maymun/Three Monkeys (2008) the award for best director, again at Cannes. With his film Bir Zamanlar Anadolu’da/Once Upon A Time in Anatolia (2011), which won the Grand Prix at Cannes the same year, and, most recently, Winter Sleep (2014), which took the Palme d’Or at Cannes this year, Ceylan has become Turkey’s top prizewinning director at home and abroad.

 

When Coffee Is Cooked

Date: Thursday, 29 May 2014

ALTHOUGH THE SOUTH AMERICAN COUNTRIES (BRAZIL AND COLOMBIA), NOT ARABIA, ARE THE LEADING EXPORTERS OF COFFEE TODAY, IN OUR TURKISH FOLKSONGS COFFEE STILL COMES FROM YEMEN. COFFEE COMES FROM YEMEN THE NIGHTINGALE FROM THE MEADOW

The arrival of coffee from great distances by camel caravan is a reminder that love too is a bumpy road. In the 16th century, coffee was also produced in the Ottoman Empire following the conquest of Egypt and Yemen. Coffee made its way into the palace of Suleiman the Magnificent, even prompting the appointment of a “chief coffee maker” to the palace staff. On “Mevlid” nights marking the birth of the Prophet Mohammad, a coffee tent would be pitched next to the Sultanahmet (“Blue”) mosque and the thick, brown beverage served to those arriving for the celebration. The first coffeehouses in Istanbul opened in the city’s most populous district of Tahtakale, and later in Eminönü and Unkapanı as well. Finding its way into every home, rich or poor, coffee spread to even the most remote backwaters of Anatolia, and the serving of coffee in government offices became traditional.

COFFEE FAD IN FRANCE
Europe learned about coffee from the Turks. Foreign travelers and diplomats visiting the Ottoman Empire speak of coffee in their memoirs, explaining in detail how it was prepared and served, and taking it back with them when they returned to their countries, where they continued the practice. When Müteferrika Süleyman Ağa was appointed envoy to the court of Louis XIV at Versailles in 1669, he entered the king’s presence clad in a coarse woolen cloak and declined to prostrate himself before the monarch. Summarily expelled from Versailles by the king, he was dispatched to Paris. In his opulent mansion in the capital, Süleyman Ağa became the darling of Parisian society thanks to his charming conversation. He also triggered a coffee-drinking fad with the beans he had brought with him from Istanbul by the sackful.

NOT FOR CHILDREN
In Turkey, children were not allowed to drink coffee. It was also regarded as unseemly for young girls to partake of the beverage, an attitude that prevailed in the West as well. Johann Sebastian Bach’s “Coffee Cantata”, which he composed in Leipzig, tells the story of a girl who liked coffee. Her father does not want her to drink it and threatens to ground her and not buy her nice dresses if she does. In a final ultimatum he even threatens not to find her a husband! At this, the girl relents, saying, “Okay, Daddy, marry me off right away.” The clever girl makes a pact with her future husband that she can drink coffee whenever she likes, and the two tie the knot!
Coffee is closely bound up with affairs of the heart. Coffee may be an irresistible beverage, but what people really want is to talk and get close to each other. Coffee is just an excuse!
When coffee is cooked
When the grounds froth up
When the heart falls…
Beauty and homeliness have no sway!

COFFEE LEGENDS
Coffee’s stimulant effects were discovered early on. Observing that when goats ate coffee beans they started jumping and cavorting, Ethiopian goatherds soon cottoned on to coffee’s stimulating effect. Monks on the other hand did not care for the taste of raw coffee berries when they ate them. Finding the berries bitter, they tossed them into the fire but then noticed the delicious aroma that arose and started brewing them as a beverage instead. When the monks were able to stay awake all night thanks to drinking coffee, they decided it must be a blessing sent from God so they could pray all night long!saucers and metal sleeves, trays, tray covers -- all tools of the itinerant coffee vendors trade.

NEVER UNDERRATE A CUP OF COFFEE
A variety of utensils and apparatus were used for preparing and serving coffee. Coffee roasting containers and trays, wooden trays for cooling the roasted beans, wooden mortars and pestles, coffee grinders with wooden boxes, metal grinders, boxes for storing coffee, coffee measuring spoons, long-handled ‘cezve’ pots for boiling the coffee, coffee braziers, handleless cups with saucers and metal sleeves, trays, tray covers -- all tools of the itinerant coffee vendors trade.

Illuminating A Period

Date: Wednesday, 28 May 2014

A NOTEBOOK KEPT BY OSMAN HAMDI BEY’S DAUGHTER, NAZLI HAMDI, FROM 1907 TO 1911 IS ON DISPLAY AT KOÇ UNIVERSITY’S ANATOLIAN CIVILIZATIONS RESEARCH CENTER.

A guestbook kept from 1907 to 1911 by the youngest daughter of distinguished painter, archaeologist and museologist Osman Hamdi Bey is shedding light on the period. Included in the guestbook, which bears signatures and testimonials by Osman Hamdi Bey’s friends and relatives, who were among the leading intellectuals of their day, are the stories of upwards of thirty individuals from Gertrude Bell and Prince Rupprecht of Bavaria to Ottoman woman poet Şair Nigar and Servet-i Fünun publisher Ahmed İhsan. Curated by Prof. Dr. Edhem Eldem, the exhibition, “Nazlı’s Notebook, Osman Hamdi Bey’s Circle”, awaits history buffs at the Koç University Anatolian Civilizations Research Center, April 30 to July 10.

June Is Biennale Month

Date: Wednesday, 28 May 2014

BIENNALES ARE CONTINUING IN JUNE IN MANY CITIES IN EUROPE.

6TH BUCHAREST BIENNALE
You can visit the 6th Bucharest Biennale, curated by young artist Gergö Horváth, through July 24. The concept of this biennal is “Apprehension: Understanding Through Fear of Understanding”.

8TH BERLIN BIENNALE
One of the world’s leading contemporary art events, the Berlin Biennale is opening its doors for the 8th time. Curated by Juan A. Gaitán, the Biennale is an open space that examines, and experiments with, the latest trends in art, from May 29 to August 3.

DUBLIN BIENNALE
Featuring the works of over 50 International and National Artists, the Dublin Biennale will be open at June 12 to 22. The Biennale will also present film screenings along with a series of performances, workshops and discussion groups. Aydın Arkun will also take part in the Biennale with his work, “Bilmeyen Emperyalin Küçük Çocuğu”.

Turkish Pavilion At The Biennale

Date: Wednesday, 28 May 2014

TURKEY FINALLY HAS A PERMANENT PAVILION AT THE VENICE BIENNALE, ONE OF THE WORLD’S LEADING SHOWCASES OF CONTEMPORARY ART AND ARCHITECTURE.

Thanks to the venue, which has been allocated to Turkey from 2014 to 2034 upon the initiative of the Istanbul Foundation of Culture and Art (İKSV) and with contributions from 21 sponsors, Turkey has its own national pavilion for the first time at the Venice Biennale International Architecture Exhibition. The pavilion will house a project called Places of Memory, curated by Murat Tabanlıoğlu and coordinated by Pelin Derviş, at the 14th Venice Architecture Biennale, June 7 to November 23. A book of interviews with the exhibition team, which includes, Ali Taptık, Alper Derinboğaz, Candaş Şişman, Metehan Özcan and Serkan Taycan, is being compiled to accompany the project.

Anglo-Saxon Artists At Pera Museum

Date: Wednesday, 28 May 2014

THE SUNA AND İNAN KIRAÇ FOUNDATION’S PERA MUSEUM IS HOSTING TWO PROMINENT ARTISTS: AMERICAN POP CULTURE ICON ANDY WARHOL AND CONTEMPORARY BRITISH ARTIST AND ROYAL ACADEMY MEMBER STEPHEN CHAMBERS.

POPULAR ART FOR ALL
“Andy Warhol: Pop Art for Everyone” is a show that features Warhol’s Campbell’s Soup Cans, Cowboys and Indians, Endangered Species, and Flowers series as well as his portraits of well-known figures like Lenin and Mick Jagger. The Andy Warhol exhibition, focusing on this artist who questioned the American lifestyle and used elements of mass culture in his art, also includes works not previously shown in Turkey.

THE BIG COUNTRY AND OTHER STORIES
A journey into the imaginary world of contemporary British artist Stephen Chambers, “Stephen Chambers: The Big Country and Other Stories” showcases the artists paintings and graphic works over the past two decades. Of note are the decorative elements in the print series and oil on canvas paintings of this artist, in whose work the influence of early Renaissance painting is evident. You can see both exhibitions May 7 to July 20.

Home Of The Little Mermaid

Date: Tuesday, 27 May 2014

HOME TO THE CELEBRATED TALES OF HANS CHRISTIAN ANDERSEN, DENMARK’S CAPITAL COPENHAGEN TRANSPORTS CHILDREN TO A VIRTUAL WONDERLAND WITH ITS MAGICAL SETTING.

TIVOLI GARDENS
Opened in 1843, the Tivoli Gardens are Europe’s oldest amusement park. The most visited park in the Scandinavian countries, Tivoli boasts rides, an open-air theater and concession stands as well as hundreds of species of flowers. You’ll feel you’re in the land of fairy tales at this park smack-dab in the city center.

HARBOR BATHS
These pools, known as the “Harbor Baths”, were built as an alternative to the city’s beaches. The most popular among the four that exist today is in the Islands Brygge area. Those who prefer a sand beach can go to Amager Strandpark.

EXPERIMENTARIUM
Children learn a thing or two about science and history when they play at the Experimentarium, which combines technology and innovation. Based on the concept of learning by doing, this entertainment center has exhibitions as well.

The Novel Of Unexpected Meetings

Date: Tuesday, 27 May 2014

ALTHOUGH ITS TITLE IS “LOVE”, BAHADIR YENIŞEHIROĞLU’S NEW BOOK, AŞK CEPHESI (THE LOVE FRONT), ACTUALLY DESCRIBES PHENOMENA THAT ARE FAR BEYOND THAT FRONT.

The love of Aşk Cephesi (The Love Front) is not a human love that ends with longing-filled separation or with the death of the lovers, but rather a love that grows and matures in the world we live in, a love that will take us on an endless journey to ourselves. Everyone has a love story, the story of an inner journey. The important thing is to get up and go for it. And perhaps Bahadır Yenişehiroğlu reminds us all of that once again in his new novel.

The World’s Biggest “Aleph”

Date: Tuesday, 27 May 2014

WORLD-RENOWNED CALLIGRAPHER FUAT BAŞAR’S WORKS ARE ON DISPLAY AT GALERI BIR İMZA.

Istanbul has a new art gallery. Located on the premises of “addressistanbul” home decorating center, Galeri Bir İmza is bringing art lovers a joint exhibition, “The Journey of the Line”, which brings together artists who have made a name for themselves, some of them worldwide, in both the traditional and the modern arts. Among the items displayed is the world’s largest “aleph” at 283 cm in height, drawn by Fuat Başar with a reed pen.

The Captain’s World

Date: Tuesday, 27 May 2014

COLLECTOR AND RESEARCHER TURGAY EROL IS BRINGING THE TREASURES OF THE PAST TO OUR DAY THROUGH HIS AUCTIONS AND THE BOOKS HE PUBLISHES.

Turgay Erol is known to the world of antiquarians and collectors as “the captain”. Erol, who shares his extensive knowledge of Ottoman and European culture with bibliophiles at the Denizler (Seas) Bookstore, which he owns, has several major works to his name, such as his Maps of Istanbul, Çakabey, the engravings of Thomas Allom and Antoine Ignace Melling, and his Album of the Crusades in Postcards.
Erol will be holding his most comprehensive auction in recent years of antiquarian books, maps and engravings on June 14. Among the items going under the hammer are the Cihannüma printed by İbrahim Müteferrika’s printshop, 11 letters signed by Mehmet Akif Ersoy, and the original edition of Reşad Ekrem Koçu’s Istanbul Encyclopedia, as well as numerous other objects and artifacts including a photograph of Sultan Abdulaziz’s wife, Saliha Sultan, engravings by travelers like Miss Julia Pardoe, and bound volumes from the Ottoman palace.

For information: www.denizlerkitabevi.com

Urartus Under The Scope

Date: Tuesday, 27 May 2014

REZAN HAS MUSEUM IS HOSTING A COLLECTION OF URARTU JEWELRY THROUGH JULY 31.

The Urartu Jewelry Collection reveals the traditions, religious beliefs and mystical notions of Urartu society. Pectorals, medallions, beads, amulets, neck rings, decorative pins, fibulae, bracelets, rings and belts are just a few of the items you can see in the show.

The Story Of Hürkuş

Article: Gamze Kantarcıoğlu Photo: Abdullah Özbudak Date: Tuesday, 27 May 2014

WE HAD A PLEASANT CHAT WITH ORHAN BAHTIYAR, AUTHOR OF "HÜRKUŞ ILE GÖKLERDE", A BOOK BEING DISTRIBUTED ALONG WITH "HEROES" MAGAZINE TO ALL CHILD PASSENGERS ON TURKISH AIRLINES' FLIGHTS DURING THE MONTH OF JUNE.

Q:How did you get into writing?
A:I started out writing for Asparagaz, one of Turkey’s first humor websites, which I set up in 1998 with some friends. In 2004, I self-published the writings I had posted there in book form. Then, in 2010, I took a break from my sales management job and settled on Mount Ida, where I set up camp for three months and wrote a book. That’s how my first book,  Ideon Tanrıların Yolu (Ideon: Pathway of the Gods), came to be on the shelves.

Q:How do you conceive of your books?
A:I base them on actual events and add fantasy elements. My concern is not to pass along all the information I’ve acquired but rather to arouse intellectual interest. To give away some of the information, to whet people’s curiosity, and to encourage them to read and learn.

Q:How did you come to write a book about Vecihi Hürkuş?
A:Sunay Akın mentioned Vecihi Hürkuş to me at a show (Hürkuş means “free bird” in Turkish). He was a man who had been passionate about flying since childhood and had clocked 30,000 hours in the air. That’s equivalent to about four years of flying time! He founded his own airplane factory and school of civil aviation. He trained numerous pilots, including Bedriye Gökmen, Turkey’s first woman civilian pilot. Vecihi Hürkuş should be engraved in our national memory. So, I said to myself, “Let me write a book about this man so more people will know who he is.”

Q:What can you tell us about this latest novel of yours?
A:It’s called “Gece Tayyarede Açıkta” (On a Night Plane in the Open Air). I used Vecihi Hürkuş’s diary as a jumping-off point but added some different characters and events.

HERE IS THE LIST OF PUBLISHED BOOKS OF ORHAN BAHTIYAR:
Ideon: Tanrıların Yolu (2011)
Hürkuş ile Göklerde (2013)
Elohim'in Çocukları (2013)
Gece Tayyarede Açıkta (2014)

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