Istanbul Biennial 2005

external project

Istanbul Biennial 2005

16/09/2005 - 30/10/2005

The 9th International ?stanbul Biennial, organized by the Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts and curated by Charles Esche and Vas?f Kortun will open on Friday, 16 September 2005 with an opening ceremony at Antrepo no.5 starting at 19:00. On Thursday, 15 September, there will be a press conference between 10:00 to 11:00, which will be followed by a tour with the guidance of the curators at 13:00. The opening of the Hospitality Zone and Book Launch will be on the same day at Antrepo no.5 at 17:00. 

The title of the 9th International ?stanbul Biennial is ?stanbul, referring both to the real urban location and the imaginative charge that this city represents for the world. The exhibition of the Biennial is being realized through Artist Residency Program, a scheme of extended residencies that range from three weeks to three months in 2005. Artist Residency Program provides the artists with the opportunity to directly encounter the urban conditions, history and future of ?stanbul within the framework of the 9th International ?stanbul Biennial. The invited artists will contribute to the Biennial with works inspired by Istanbul or reflects upon the city with work that contrasts with the environment and the condition of Istanbul.

The 9th International ?stanbul Biennial will be situated in several small and large scale spaces in the Taksim-Galata region of ?stanbul, preferring to work in sites that have a more common reference to the every-day rather than using monumental historical places as in the previous biennials. The main building of the Biennial will be Antrepo no.5 which will host the Hospitality Zone and the 9B Positionings Programme. The Hospitality Zone will be a space for guest exhibitions, such as Young Turkish Artists exhibition curated by Halil Alt?ndere and exhibition of Hafriyat Group. Developed in parallel with the 9th Istanbul Biennial, the 9B Positionings Programme will spotlight different cultural phenomena within the city and beyond. This project will take various forms, from lectures and events, metaphoric maps and catalogue essays, to tours and travel advice. In this way Positionings will highlight and support by affiliation concurrent projects in the city and internationally that further elaborate and/or offer different perspectives on the proposals of the biennial. Through these activities Antrepo no.5 is to become a meeting point in the city with various social and artistic activities which also include press conferences, opening ceremony, meetings with the artists, workshops, conferences, performances and parties.

There will be two main publications of the 9th International ?stanbul Biennial; a comprehensive short guide and a critical reader dedicated to the conceptual framework of the biennial, both of which will be available at the opening. The short guide is designed to inform the visitors about the actual works they see at the exhibition. Bringing together valuable texts from academics and artists from Turkey and abroad, the reader will contain articles on art, democracy and city that lay out and articulate the conceptual structure of the biennial. The reader will also contain 25 photographs of ?stanbul taken by the Italian photographer Gabriele Basilico who has been invited to ?stanbul to work on a series of photographic images of ?stanbul in March 2005. His photographs will also be seen on several other printed materials such as poster, billboards and postcards as well as the official website of the biennial.

Within the 9th International ?stanbul Biennial, a weekly newspaper will be published as well with the collaboration of Radikal newspaper. The Biennial newspaper will be published every Friday starting from September 1 for two months and will include artist pages, interviews, pages related to the biennial projects, international and national art news, critical essays, curatorial columns, reports from the artist assistants, articles and debates.

Parallel to the 9th International ?stanbul Biennial’s intent to expand its presence beyond the formal limits of the exhibition, a series of panels and talks with the title 9B Talks are designed to take place throughout the year starting from October 2004 until the opening of the Biennial. Artists, valuable speakers such as academics, writers and curators with expertise in areas related to the conceptual frame of the 9th Istanbul Biennial are invited. Through these talks artists are given the opportunity to present themselves and their areas of interest to the Turkish public. These talks also provide a platform of discussion and exchange between the artists and the audience while they also make the Biennial a yearlong activity and discussion arena on the artistic and social issues pointed at the Biennial.

There will also be a parallel exhibition at Van AbbeMuseum in Eindhoven, Netherlands within the framework of the Istanbul Biennial. The Eindhoven exhibition will be sharing some artists and drawing on the history of past Istanbul Biennials to represent the idea of “elsewhere” in all its complexity within an international art museum. In doing so, it will pose questions about the hierarchy between the stable art museum context and the transient Biennial event.