Forbes Travel Notes – Reviews, features & travel notes

Istanbul Modern Akyavas Retrospective

Art Istanbul & Contemporary Istanbul bring Turkish and International modern art and culture together

Istanbul is pulsating with even more creativity that usual at the moment with the start today of ‘Art Istanbul’.


This week long frenzy of contemporary art pulls together the metropolis’ leading museums, foundations and institutions. Activities encompass talks, artistic performances and workshops, at SALT, Arter, Istanbul Modern, Istanbul Foundation for Arts and Culture and the Sakip Sabanci Museum.
Running alongside Art Istanbul from Thursday is ‘Contemporary Istanbul’. This major, annual international art fair brings together international artists as well as showcasing Turkey’s vibrant urban arts scene.


‘Contemporary Istanbul’ is set to feature 96 galleries from 21 countries with works by more than 650 international and Turkish artists. This eighth edition of fair will be the largest event to date, with half of the works to be exhibited from the region Balkans, North Africa and East Mediterranean and the rest from Europe and America.
Leading hotels in Turkey’s cultural and business ‘capital’ have prepared special itineraries and packages for guests. For example The Ritz Carlton Istanbul has created the ‘Discover with you Package’. The hotel’s General Manager Massimiliano Zanardi explains, ‘Contemporary Istanbul is just a 10-minute walk from The Ritz-Carlton, Istanbul in the heart of the city and we are providing special complimentary access to the event for all guests who want to enjoy this cultural highlight’.

The Ritz Carlton Hotel Tower Istanbul

In the same building as The Ritz-Carlton, Istanbul is the non-profit Ekavart Gallery, which has nurtured fresh contemporary art talent for more than 20 years, while just minutes from the hotel is the Istanbul Museum of Modern Art on the Bosphorus which has provided exhibition space for ground-breaking Turkish work since 2004.
“The Ritz-Carlton, Istanbul is in the centre of the city’s most influential art districts — close to the bohemian artists’ neighbourhood of Cihangir and the new galleries of Tophane and within walking distance of the immaculate art spaces of Beşiktas,” said Zanardi.
For details of the hotel, see my review here.


In addition, ‘Contemporary Istanbul’ is running in conjunction with the ‘Bodrum Contemporary Art Campus (BCAC)’, an artist residency project taking place in Bodrum Yahşi. This project is said to be the first ‘art campus/artist residency’ project in the world initiated by an art fair organisation.

Gardens  Casa Dell'Arte, Bodrum, Turkey Andrew Forbes

Whilst in Bodrum I stayed at the beautiful boutique art house hotel, ‘Casa Dell’Arte’ – for more information of the property and my feature, click here.

Main building  Casa Dell'Arte, Bodrum, Turkey Andrew Forbes

You can also read my recent feature on ‘Destination Istanbul’ here.

Turkish Airlines off direct flights to Istanbul from across the globe.

Art Istanbul (November 4-10)
Contemporary Istanbul (November 7-10)

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Andrew ForbesTravel and Lifestyle Marketing Communications Consultant | Travel Editor and Content Writer Web: Twitter: @andrewaforbes Instagram: @andrewaforbes and @luxurynavigatorView all posts by Andrew Forbes »