Author Archives: banunbetween

Istanbul Street Style

Back again after a long time, but i had one very good reason to go missing, and its called istanbul street style!

About a month ago, by the power given to me by google search and email, i met an amazing person named Dano Alexander.

In a nutshell, for Dano everything about this project started with his blog,, on which he featured photographs of the many interesting figures on the streets of istanbul. He really captures the uniqueness of these figures without getting caught up on who they are, where they come from or where and how they get their clothes. The most important thing is that these people are capable of freely expressing themselves all the superficial details aside..
To make the long story short, the idea behind the blog gets bigger and bigger and ends up becoming a monthly event called Sahane* in which i as well am involved as a curator/art director.
Our first Sahane* event happened recently at the Hall. Now that I have mentioned the Hall, I need to give a little more detail about the space cause its even more sahane… The Hall is an event space located behind Emek Sinemasi, which used to be a church. Magnet Istanbul took this beautiful structure and turned it into an amazing event arena with multiple rooms, gallery space, main dance floor and etc.. So we really had to give its worth to this space and i truly believe that we did. Within the show, there were two catwalks that 12 extremely talented emerging fashion designers displayed their collections. Along with that the gallery space featured 25 new and established artists (photographers, illustrators, painters, stylists, painters, conceptual artists), which added up to about 200 pieces of beautiful artwork. Besides all the art and fashion, there was also Ari Alpert’s stencil performance, a live cooking show by Dilara Erbay, the creative showcase Magicbox and many more!







There is a lot I can say about this event but it wouldn’t do the justice.. Istanbul has been longing for events like this for a long time.. Come visit us at our May 12th show and share the experience…

If you are an artist reading this you can contact us at, preferably with a link to ur portfolio.

Those of you who missed this show, please see the continuation of this show at the Levi’s Gallery in Beyoglu.



Transmediale 07

by Banu Alpay


Transmediale is an annual festival for digital art and culture and this year I was lucky enough to experience it for the first time.

The festival’s 07 theme was unfinished and from Unfinished Cities to Unfinishing Creations it has addressed many progressing outcomes of our very unfinished digital/cyber/urban culture. First of all, I should say, as a first time visitor, Berlin and Akademie der Kunste was the perfect spot for the event.The city itself has just got so much to offer…

Ok.. tuning to the subject now..

In this year’s Transmediale I got to hear Orhan Esen’s presentation within the Unfinished Cities conference. Mr Esen is the co-writer and co-editor of the book ‘Self Service City: Istanbul. His book is “a book that gathers analyses, essays, reports and images about Istanbul – not least in view of Western European metropolises in which the autonomous appropriation of urban spaces is similarly excluded from the prevailing pictures of an urban civitas”(Transmediale, 44). In his speech, he mainly talked about the gated communities of Istanbul such as Kemer Country (formerly known as Gokturk village), and why the demand is so increasingly high for this segregated living style of the upper class. He pointed out many things such as the need of security, exclusivity, suburban life, and more hands on nature experience. He also mentioned the marketing strategies of these big property management companies who claim that they don’t only sell you a house but apparently introduce you to a new and better life style as well. This is all open to various arguments but listening to his speech i couldn’t help but ask myself the most inevitable question. Considering the extreme ends of architectural examples (gecekondus vs. gated communities and skyscrapers) we have here; is this city’s expansion so out of control to feed the needs of the increasing population that we don’t worry about fixing it but just keep building on the damage? Unfortunately, i think the answer is pretty obvious to that and it only underlines how we ended up with this abstract fusion of architecture as a result of Istanbul’s socioeconomic imbalance, but complaining is the easy part. Actually changing things will be and is the most challenging part for our generation. These dilemmas exist in most metropolises but Istanbul is one of the only few that has survived beautifully for over 3000 years, and i know me, you and a lot more will work hard to keep it that way!

Unfinished Cities

Apart from the subject related most to this blog, Transmediale housed many more interesting conferences, video screenings, interactive projects, and brilliant art installations. I’ll strongly suggest to those who are into contemporary digital culture and practices to keep an eye on this festival.

For more photos of Transmediale, visit