Opening of the 15th Istanbul Biennial

Good neighbour Istanbul Biennial

“What is a Good Neighbour ?” a legitimate question to which participants to the 15th Istanbul Biennial will attempt to answer. The theme has been selected by artists duo Elmgreen & Dragset, curators of the event.

So what is a good neighbour ? There are many opinions on what makes a good neighbour. Perhaps someone you don’t hear or bump into ? someone who shares the same political ideas ? someone ready to help ? It is all a question of point of view. The international character of the biennial within the geopolitical context surrounding Turkey make for an highly anticipated event. Over 55 artists from 32 countries will take part in the exhibition scattered over 6 different locations in Istanbul. According to Bige Örer, Director of the Istanbul Biennial, “the 15th edition’s theme responds very well to our current situation. It is inviting everyone to put their feet in someone else’s shoes.”

Amongst the most important artists invited to take part are Monica Bovincini, Mark Dion, Adel Abdessemed, Tatiana Trouvé and the international aspect is also truly extended via partnerships with cities across the globe : Sydney, Moscow, Chicago, Milan are also hosting a “Billboard project”, an artistic-advertising link to the Istanbul Biennal. On site, in Istanbul itself, the public will be invited to take part in community events : workshops, symposiums, cooking sessions which will assist to enhance the community feeling. So many ways to feel surrounded by “good neighbours” indeed.

“We believe the strength of this project is that it poses [the] same questions in different cultural contexts and reminds us how we share a common fate beyond our own borders (…) Society is changing, economy’s are changing, behaviours are changing and we all try to understand the new world order and adapt ourselves to the future. It is beautiful that this project is a result of an international collaboration.” according to Bige Örer.

The Istanbul Biennial runs from Sept.16 to Nov.12, 2017. For more informations, please click here.

Image Credit : 15th Istanbul Biennial international billboard project in Ireland : Elmgreen & Dragset in collaboration with photographer Lukas Wassmann, design by Rupert Smyth