A subsidiary of the Vehbi Koç Foundation (VKV), Arter
opened the doors of its new building in Dolapdere on Friday, September 13th with a multidisciplinary programme comprised of exhibitions, events, learning and film programme, and publications.
At its new home, Arter will strive to be a sustainable, vibrant cultural hub, making its broad range of programmes accessible to everyone.
Designed by Grimshaw Architects, London, Arters new building is conceived as a versatile space, presenting multi-layered possibilities to discover, enjoy and engage in a closer dialogue with art. The building consists of physically intersected spaces in a strong visual dialogue with the city. Sprawled across an indoor area of 18,000 m2, Arters main function areas are connected by a central atrium that serves as the heart of the building. Spread on six floors the galleries feature varying volumes, ceiling heights and a high degree of flexibility.
The building also features two performance halls. With a seating capacity of 168, the Sevgi Gönül Auditorium will house Arters film programme, conferences, and panels, as well as chamber concerts and examples of performing arts including dance and movement. Karbon, a full-fledged Blackbox has a flexible seating structure for 332 people. Both halls offer multiple seating options, which allows them to host large-scale installations or projects that require multi-channel panoramic projection.
The Learning Studio provides a flexible space for talks, discussions, workshops, as well as hands-on artistic production. Arters library holds primary sources on art, a collection of books constantly updated in line with the exhibitions and events programmes, and magazines. The building also houses a bookstore featuring art publications from Turkey and elsewhere, a bistro, and a backyard that caters to outdoor events.
Arters inaugural programme features seven exhibitions in total, four of them drawn from its collection that comprises more than 1,300 works as of 2019. The collection-based group exhibition What Time Is It? is curated by Emre Baykal and Eda Berkmen, and formed around the concepts of memory, time and space. Curated by Selen Ansen, Words Are Very Unnecessary is also a collection-based group exhibition that revolves around the themes of gesture, remains and trace. Curated by Başak Doğa Temür, the Altan Gürman retrospective exhibition is put together from the collection and brings to light the entire oeuvre of the artist who died in 1976. Devised with a retrospective approach, Ayşe Erkmens exhibition Whitish brings together works produced since the 1970s and new pieces the artist has produced specifically for this exhibition, offering an in-depth overview of Erkmens practice. Rosa Barba's solo presentation titled The Hidden Conference comprises of a three-part film series that the artist shot at different museum storage facilities. İnci Furnis solo exhibition She Waited For A While comprises entirely of new works the artist has produced for this exhibition. Céleste Boursier-Mougenots offroad, v.2 features three grand pianos that drift at different speeds in interaction with the speed and direction of the wind outside.
Arter will also present a multi-disciplinary events programme featuring outstanding and innovative examples of performing arts, classical, contemporary and electronic music, film, performance and digital arts, putting them in dialogue with the collection and exhibitions where possible. The events are not limited to Arters two performance halls, the Sevgi Gönül Auditorium and Karbon, but also held in different parts/spaces of the building. Collaborating with local and international artists, curators and various institutions, Arter also commissions and co-produces new works.
Arters Film Programme will include regular weekly screenings in addition to retrospectives focused either on a theme or a director as well as comprehensive presentations enriched with talks and parallel events. The programme will kick off with a retrospective on Jonas Mekas.
The Learning Programme will present processes and activities that aspire to interpreting our times through art. Providing grounds for everyone to enjoy creative processes, the programme aims to facilitate dialogue around contemporary art through exploring the interrelationships between its multiple contexts, the audience's daily lives and imaginations.
At its new building, Arter will continue presenting publications that aim to enhance and stimulate conversations around contemporary art. The publications programme will also launch two new series focusing on Arter's collection: Arter Close-Up and Arter Background.