Contemporary Istanbul, one of city's leading art events, will welcome visitors online between Dec. 21 and Jan. 6 this year due to the coronavirus pandemic. The virtual event, sponsored by Akbank, will host 37 galleries and 550 artists from 11 countries. Visitors can view the exhibition and its some 1,500 artworks free of charge.
The 15th edition of Contemporary Istanbul was first delayed from September to December due to ongoing measures to contain the virus. As a result, a virtual event was launched while the physical event has been postponed again to April 27, 2021.
Contemporary Istanbul’s Chairperson Ali Güreli said: "There is positive news coming from all around the world regarding coronavirus vaccines. So, we have decided to move our physical event to the hopefully greener pastures of the spring." Güreli emphasized that the virtual event is not a substitute for the real one. "We believe that our virtual event will be as exciting as our physical editions. We look forward to seeing every bit of the enthusiasm and activity displayed for our physical events, in the online edition as well."
Murat Göllü, head of corporate communications at the sponsor Akbank, added: “We have been supporting Contemporary Istanbul, which has contributed enormously to the development of contemporary art in Turkey, for 15 years. Akbank takes its place in the event with the Akbank Art Gallery exhibition every year. We will attend the event with our show this year again.” Göllü noted that the exhibit centers around the theme, "Corona Diaries Carnival," this year and will be curated by Hasan Bülent Kahraman. "We believe, Virtual Contemporary Istanbul will offer a unique experience to visitors with its innovative design.”