The Hungarian Cultural Center in Istanbul is hosting a new exhibition featuring the unrealized projects of Hungarian architects in Turkey. “Hungarian Designs in Turkey, the Unrealized Projects of Hungarian Architects from the Late Ottoman to Early Republican Turkey” opens on Nov. 6 and will be on display until Jan. 31, 2021. Visitors will be able to explore the exhibition in line with the necessary health precautions.
Prepared in collaboration with researchers from Hungary and Turkey, the cultural center’s latest exhibition highlights a period in which Turkey’s architectural environment underwent a significant change. It develops a profile of the creators of the modernist movement in Turkey, especially the construction of the capital Ankara, encouraging visitors to reflect on the era.
In addition to a large number of German, French and Austrian architects, Hungarian scientists and professionals also had a strong influence on the first period of the republic. The exhibition will bring together for the first time the unrealized building plans and project outlines of famous Hungarian architects from both the last period of the Ottoman Empire and the early years of the Turkish republic. Imre Henszlmann's 1937 design titled "Soli Deo Gloria" for a church to be built in Istanbul to commemorate the British soldiers martyred during the Crimean War; Jozsef Vago's project for the competition on the building design for the Turkish Grand National Assembly (TBMM) in 1937; Ferenc Hillinger's 1938 sketch of a residence in the Istanbul Bosporus and Kavala Hotel project by LAKOTERV, comprising of Istvan Janaky, Jozsef Körner, Peter Molnar, Antal Vass and Istvan Zilahy, are among these projects.
The exhibition aims to highlight the contrast between Hungarian architectural projects and German-Turkish architectural relations of the period within a historical framework. It showcases plans designed for important landmarks designated in Istanbul and Ankara and allows viewers to imagine what the projects would look like if actualized. To further supplement the viewers' imagination, a video has been prepared with the support of the Foundation for the Protection of Heritage of the Tomb of Gül Baba depicting a world in which the projects had been realized. Visitors will be invited to complete, survey and vote for the structure they would most like to be brought to life if they were on an architectural jury. The exhibition also reviews projects of prominent Turkish architects of the time including Mimar Kemaleddin Bey, Sedad Hakkı Eldem, Zühtü Başar and Ekrem Hakkı Ayverdi.
Experts including Gergo Mate Kovacs, Gabor Fodor, Professor Nur Urfalıoğlu, associate professor Zafer Sağdıç, Mehmet Emin Yılmaz, Orkun Dayıoğlu and Peter Rabb also made great contributions to the exhibition.
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