9th Istanbul Biennial
ISTANBUL, TURKEY, Aug. 12, 2005 - The 9th International Istanbul Biennial, organized by the Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts and curated by Charles Esche and Vasıf Kortun will take place from Sept. 16 to Oct. 30, featuring 71 artists from more than 40 countries, who will present their talents in multidisciplinary and multimedia manners.   The biannual event is considered one of the world’s preeminent art fairs, greatly due to the fact that Istanbul , with its extraordinary architecture, rich history and young, energetic populace, is an active participant rather than simply a backdrop.  Therefore it is fitting that the theme for the 2005 biennial is the host city itself.

The invited artists will contribute works inspired by Istanbul or that reflect upon the city by expressing contrasts with the environment and the multi-faceted character of Istanbul .  To realize the Istanbul theme, an artist residency program has been instituted with residencies ranging from three weeks to three months that provides artists with the opportunity to personally experience the urban conditions, history and future of Istanbul within the framework of the 9th International Istanbul Biennial.  Artists who have been hosted in Istanbul or will be part of the residency program include Daniel Bozhkov, Erik Göngrich, Karl-Heinz Klopf, Mario Rizzi, Phil Collins, Pilvi Takala, Servet KoçyiÄźit, Solmaz Shahbazi, Yael Bartana, Silke Otto-Knapp, Michael Blum, Jon Mikel Euba and the artist group Ruangrupa.  

The 9th International Istanbul Biennial will be situated in several venues - all within 15 minutes walking distance from each other - located throughout the intriguing Taksim-Galata area of Istanbul , a departure from previous biennials which have utilized more monumental and historical places.   The biennial’s principle space will be a former warehouse on the Bosphorous at Antrepo no.5, which will host the Hospitality Zone and the 9B Positionings Program, as well as the opening ceremony, workshops, conferences, performances and parties. The Hospitality Zone will feature the biennial’s large scale installations, such as the Young Turkish Artists Exhibition curated by Halil Altındere and exhibition of the Hafriyat Group.


Developed in concert with the 9th Istanbul Biennial, the 9B Positionings Program will spotlight different cultural phenomena within the city and beyond, taking various forms, from lectures and events, metaphoric maps and catalogue essays, to tours and travel advice.

One of the more unusual highlights of the biennial will be a project entitled Eau d'Ernest by Daniel Bozhkov, which will introduce a perfume inspired by Ernest Hemmingway.

Two publications will enhance participants’ appreciation of the biennial - a comprehensive guide and a critical reader, dedicated to the conceptual framework of the biennial, both of which will be available at the opening. The guide is designed to inform visitors about the works exhibited, while the reader’s articles on art, democracy and the city that articulate the conceptual structure of the biennial as a whole.

The reader will also feature 25 photographs of Istanbul taken by the Italian photographer Gabriele Basilico, who was invited to Istanbul to work on a series of photographic images of the city in March 2005.  These will also be showcased in other 9th Istanbul Biennial materials such as posters, billboards and postcards, as well as on the event’s web site.

A parallel exhibition at Van Abbe Museum in Eindhoven , Netherlands will focus on works from and the history of past Istanbul Biennials to represent the idea of “elsewhere” in all its complexity.  In doing so, the exhibition will pose questions about the hierarchy between the stable art museum context and the transient biennial event.

For more information about the 9th Istanbul Biennial, its schedule and artists, please visit www.iksv.org/bienal/english.  For tickets, go to www.biletix.com.  Turkey , the site of two wonders of the ancient world, is a present-day marvel – the cradle of civilization, the very center of world history and a modern Westward-looking republic. It is a country of fascinating contrasts, where antiquity is juxtaposed with the contemporary, the familiar with the exotic; where sun-swept beaches beckon less than an hour away from snow-capped mountains, and everywhere visitors are treated to the extraordinary warmth of the Turkish people.

For information about travel to Turkey, call 1-877-FOR-TURKEY 
or contact the Turkish Culture and Tourism Offices in New York at 212-687-2194 
or in Washington D.C. at 202-612-6800 or in Los Angeles at 323-937-8066
and visit www.tourismturkey.org 
or www.kulturturizm.gov.tr


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