International Istanbul Biennial

International Istanbul Biennial
The International Istanbul Biennial (İstanbul Bienali or IKSV Bienal) is a biennial contemporary art exhibition that takes place in the Turkish city of Istanbul. Founded in 1987, it is held on odd years. It is considered one of the most prestigious biennials in the world alongside Venice, São Paulo and Sydney.

The International Istanbul Biennial is run and managed by the Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts (İstanbul Kültür Sanat Vakfı, IKSV), a non-profit cultural institution that strives to present Turkey’s artistic and cultural assets to the world and turn Istanbul into a major center within the international culture and arts community. The Biennial was established as a meeting point for artists from diverse cultures, art critics, curators, and the audience.

The first two biennials were held under the general coordination of Beral Madra. In 1992, the IKSV adopted a single curator system. The curator, appointed by the advisory board, chooses the theme and develops the conceptual framework of the Biennial, as well as helps select the participating artists. Past curators have included Vasif Kortun, René Block, Rosa Martinez, Paolo Colombo, Yuko Hasegawa, Dan Cameron, Charles Esche, Hou Hanru, WHW / What, How & for Whom, Adriano Pedrosa, Jens Hoffmann, Fulya Erdemci, and Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev.

The Istanbul Biennial welcomes artists from all over the world, enabling a dialog between artists and the audience through the artists’ work. The Biennial also hosts an educational program, panel discussions, conferences and workshops on the latest developments in the art world. The event is held in several venues in the heart of Istanbul, all located within walking distance. For instance, the 2017 venues included Istanbul Modern, Galata Greek Primary School, Ark Kültür, Pera Museum, Artist Collective’s Studio, and Küçük Mustafa Paşa Hammam.

International Istanbul Biennial




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