December 15, 2014 - Istanbul Design Biennial - The 2nd Istanbul Design Biennial closing report
December 15, 2014

The 2nd Istanbul Design Biennial closing report

The 2nd Istanbul Design Biennial Hub, Galata Greek Primary School, 2014. © Ali Güler.

Closing report

Istanbul Design Biennial

Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts
Sadi Konuralp Caddesi No:5
Şişhane 34433 Istanbul

T +90 212 334 07 66
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Since opening on 1 November, the six-week long event hosted over 100,000 visitors at the biennial hub at the Galata Greek Primary School, at the event space at Antrepo 7, and at pop-up venues throughout the city. They were able to view 53 projects from designers all over the world, as well as participate in an ambitious academy programme and a host of other parallel events such as panels, design walks and workshops. 

An archive of all the projects in the biennial and programmes can be found on the biennial website.

The 2nd Istanbul Design Biennial was titled The Future Is Not What It Used To Be, and was curated by Zoë Ryan and associate curator Meredith Carruthers. It was organised by the Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts (İKSV).

The biennial asked “What is the future now?” By rethinking the manifesto as a platform to frame pertinent questions and suggest new directions, the projects explored the role of design and its complex relationship to society. The biennial was exhibited over all five floors of the Galata Greek Primary School, an area of approximately 2,300 square metres. The projects were framed by an engaging installation design by Istanbul architects Superpool and New York-based graphic designers Project Projects. Arranged in five departments—Personal, Norms and Standards, Resource, Civic Relations, and Broadcast—the projects imagined new possibilities that can transform the present and instigate new potential futures. 

Curator Zoë Ryan says, “The biennial is an opportunity to explore critical issues that are impacting the world around us and to emphasize the changing scope of design and its ability to be an active agent for change. We are really delighted that so many people visited the biennial and attended the programmes which helped enrich the biennial over the six-week run.” 

The richly illustrated catalogue of the biennial, also titled The Future is Not What it Used to Be, contains an introductory essay by curator Zoë Ryan, as well as original essays by leading international thinkers on design, and texts about all 53 projects featured in the biennial. It is co-published by İKSV and Hatje Cantz, and is available internationally. For more information about the catalogue, click here.

Thanks to the generous co-sponsorship of Arçelik, Doğuş Group & Bilgili Holding, ENKA Foundation and VitrA, and the support of various institutions and sponsors, the biennial was free of charge for the first time this year.

The third edition of the Istanbul Design Biennial will take place in fall 2016. The curator and theme of the biennial will be announced in 2015.

Istanbul Design Biennial
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