Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Istanbul Public Art

I composed a 30"x30" board of public art in Istanbul, Turkey. I have depictions of 2D, 3D, and 4D art. (I also have depictions of henna tattoos for the boarder as this is a form of art that is popular to the culture of Istanbul). In order for me to understand the public art in Istanbul, I had to understand what is going on politically wise in this city. I think that public art is an artists form of public speech and a lot of times what the people have to speak about is government and other civil issues. I even came across a graffiti message on a wall somewhere that said "read walls, not books". I thought that was a very profound statement because if you want to know what the people really think, just look at the public art in and around any given city. I found that in 2000 street art increased in Europe and eventually made its way to Istanbul. Streets then became a mechanism for communication. Some current issues in Istanbul are secularism, the civil war in Syria, and the clash with religion as the government increases with islamist and authoritarian rule. This later issue increase the strength of islamic education in public primary schools. Istanbul has three major religions within it, Christianity, Islam, and Judaism. The disagreements between these religions can be seen through history with changing of the Hagia Sophia from a christian church to a mosque and currently a museum. There have also been many protest about freedom of press, expression, and assembly. Based upon these findings is how I decided to focus my search for public art in Istanbul.

My 2D art selections are "Raised Fists" by Krioe, "INTI" artist unknown, and a wall painting by Franco Fasoli of two soldiers on horses. My 3D art selections are of "Stars of Istanbul" by Aziz Sariyer, "Aslan" by Salcuk Yilmaz, "1550 Chairs Stacked Between Two Buildings" by Doris Salcedo, and a pieces by Sarkis Zabunyan that is of lights situated on the side of a building to resemble a rainbow. My 4D selections were of the Hagia Sophia and the "Painted Steps of Istanbul" by Huseyin Cetinel.

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