Highlights of Contemporary Istanbul

6 June 2021
Highlights of Contemporary Istanbul

We have compiled eye-catching artworks from 15th edition of Contemporary Istanbul.

Even though I went Lütfi Kırdar Rumeli Hall early morning hour, there were many visitors in the exhibition area. There was also a retired press member among this crowd, who came from Kadıköy by ferry to visit the fair. He said, he did not miss the fair this year, as he does every year. And he added that his passion of art brought him to Harbiye from Kadıköy, despite the epidemic and his advanced age. The same passion also makes it possible to organize the 15th edition of Contemporary Istanbul in some way, despite all the restrictions of the pandemic. All galleries and artists participating in the fair show how art resists to devastating effect of time.


Crash is the exhibition of NFT works by collector Feride İkiz. Furthermore, it is the first physical NFT exhibition for Turkey. The exhibition met with art lovers at the Contemporary Istanbul House of Brothers Lounge; no doubt that it was one of the most interesting exhibitions of the fair. The exhibition curated by Hande Şekerciler and Arda Yalkın. One of the most fascinating works of the exhibition is AES+F’s NFT work Allegoria Sacra, Reincarnation (2021).

Server Demirtaş – Bozlu Art Project

Server Demirtaş’s kinetic sculptures examines on the relationship between man and machine, and these works always attract great attention. These works are one of the notable works of Contemporary Istanbul. The kinetic sculptures “Çığlık 2” (The Scream II) and “Angel Boy” exhibited at Bozlu Art Project leave a great impression on the audience with their extremely realistic lines and movements as if moving in slow motion.

Kadir Akyol – Gallery Diani

Kadir Akyol’s works in Contemporary Istanbul are among the interesting works that must be see in the fair. Akyol produces his works in line with the “Anatolian Pop Art”, which is a colorful and lively art movement that a form of “Pop Art”. Akyol’s Greek gods series consists of paintings in which irony elements are dynamically blended. The Hypnos, a painting from this series asserts that “The castle may in mind.”

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From Gallery Diani IG account

Mert Özgen – Galeri/Miz

“The wounds I draw in the paintings were the hope to leak inside from visible surface of the body,” Mert Özgen says in an interview. The children’s drawings on the wounded face maybe represent this hope of artist.

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Mert Özgen, Galeri/Miz

Leyla Emadi – Vision Art Platform

Art is a healing way for Emadi. With her last exhibition “Gel-Git”, the artist was wishing that those who saw the exhibition could go their inside. We can say that her works exhibited at the Contemporary Istanbul Vision Art Platform have the same effect. Emadi’s latest works exhibited at the fair have become one of the resisting works of art for the tough period we are going through. She reminds us starting over with her work titled I AM GOING TO START AGAIN.

Highlights Of Contemporary Istanbul

Thanks to Contemporary Istanbul, we have reminded once again that both human being and art can always start over. As Nietzsche says, “Da Capo!”, that is, from the beginning.