The Ai Weiwei exhibition is one of the most talked-about arts events in Istanbul in 2017 – so much so, that it has been extended until the end of January and we wanted to give members another opportunity to see it – together with a look at the Sakıp Sabanci’s amazing calligraphy exhibition.
Ai Weiwei is China's most famous international artist, and likely its most outspoken domestic critic. Despite challenges of censorship and battling the legal system, Ai expresses himself and organises support for protest through his art and social media.
Our IWI partner Banu Küçüksubaşı, a professional Art Historian and Tour Guide, will provide an enlightening and engaging guided tour of both the permanent calligraphy collection and the Ai Weiwei special exhibition.
Sakıp Sabancı began collecting Ottoman calligraphy and Ottoman art in the early republican period. Today’s museum, in the beautiful “Horse Mansion” (built in the 1920’s and named after the wonderful statue in the garden overlooking the Bosphorus), contains his private collection of around 1,000 items. It has hosted several important exhibitions of international artists since opening in 2002.
We will first the permanent Ottoman calligraphy collection, seeing valuable Qurans, calligraphic panels, and fermans. Seize this rare opportunity to learn about how Islamic culture is abstract, and how two dimensional lines have much deeper meanings as they reach out into the fourth dimension. Banu will talk about calligrapher sultans, how calligraphy was also used to make pictures, and how the usage of words describes the world in place of drawing it, making comparisons with modern and contemporary art.
Then on to the highlight - Ai Wei Wei’s works. Ai’s work consists of installations, videos, photos, and sculptures focusing on political matters, human rights, refugees and other subjects. We are delighted that his first solo exhibition in Istanbul will be interpreted for us by Banu.
© International Women of Istanbul 2017