Istanbul Modern reopened in a new building
News Id: 51

Istanbul Modern reopened in a new building

The Istanbul Museum of Modern Art was established in 2004 as the first modern and contemporary art museum in Turkey. This museum has recently reopened after five years of closure.

Artdayme: According to archello, A month after welcoming its first visitors and almost two decades since the museum’s establishment in a former warehouse at the same site, Istanbul Modern, designed by renowned architecture practice Renzo Piano Building Workshop, officially opened its doors this week. Following a temporary relocation to a 120-year-old venue in the neighbouring Beyoglu district, the museum has finally returned to its original location.

Spanning across an expansive area of more than 10000 sqm, the landmark building majestically sits on the historic Karaköy waterfront, which holds significance as the meeting point of the Bosporus and Golden Horn waterways.

Istanbul modern 4

photo credit: Cemal Emden

The rectilinear structure features a top-heavy form, with three imposing volumes wrapped in a glass and aluminium facade, reflecting the essence of the context. Aluminium panels evoke an iridescent quality by mirroring the changing colours of the sky while drawing cues from the nearby Bosphorus waterway and mimicking fish scales. 

The ground level of the structure sits in a glazed envelope, serving as an extension of the promenade and providing endless views of the waterway. It houses a cafe, library, museum information spots, and an exclusive workshop area for the Discovery Project made in collaboration with the Centre Pompidou, Paris.

The first floor hosts several galleries, a space set for pop-ups, spacious, stylish staff offices and a restaurant with an outdoor terrace offering panoramic views of the Bosporus. A gallery housing the museum's permanent collection of contemporary art is located on the floor above.

Istanbul modern 1

photo credit: Cemal Emden

Inside, a grand central staircase, a hallmark of Renzo Piano’s architectural style, welcomes visitors to explore the upper levels of the building, from the lobby to the rooftop. Here a serene, reflective pool flawlessly mirrors the vibrancy of the Bosporus while serving as a beloved gathering spot for seagulls.

Istanbul modern 2

photo credit: Cemal Emden

By curating the artworks of numerous renowned artists within its galleries, the museum's mission extends beyond displaying Turkiye's historical narrative and encompasses a desire to showcase its contemporary essence as well, resulting in a captivating tapestry that reflects Turkish life, culture, and art.