Critics and academics
Vasıf Kortun is a curator, writer and teacher in the field of contemporary visual art, its institutions and exhibition practices. He is the Director of Platform Garanti Contemporary Art Center in Istanbul, the founding Director of Project Istanbul Museum of Contemporary Art (2001–2003), the chief Curator and Director of the 3rd International Istanbul Biennial (1992) and Co-Director with Charles Esche of the 9th International Istanbul Biennial (2005). Between 1994 and 1997 he worked as the founding Director of the Museum of the Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College.
Beral Madra was the Director of Istanbul 2010-European Capital of Culture Visual Arts Directorate. She is a critic and curator, directed Gallery BM (1984-1990) and directing BM Contemporary Art Center (since 1990). She coordinated the 1st (1987) and the 2nd (1989) Istanbul Biennale, curated exhibitions of Turkish artists in 43rd, 45th, 49th , 50th and 51st Venice Biennale, co-curated the exhibition Modernities and Memories-Recent Works from the Islamic World in 47th Venice Biennale. Since 1984 she has organized solo exhibitions of 50 local and international artists in her art centre and in other official art spaces in Istanbul. Since 1980 her articles have been published in Gösteri, Arredamento Dekorasyon, Cumhuriyet, Istanbul, Kalın, Anons, Radikal and in three books “Identity of Contemporary Art” (1987), “Postperipheral Flux-A Decade of Contemporary Art in Istanbul” (1996), “Art Criticism and Curatorial Practices East Of EU” (2004), “Art Every Two Years- Essays on Biennale” (2003) and “Home Affairs : On Contemporary Art and Culture in Turkey” (2009). firstname.lastname@example.org
Ali Akay is Professor and Head of the Sociology Department at Mimar Sinan Fine Art University, as well as Visiting Professor at Humboldt University (Berlin), the University of Paris VIII and INHA, also in Paris. He is a prolific author, writing on various aspects of Turkish contemporary art, and also a highly regarded curator, frequently organizing exhibitions for the Akbank Sanat, Istanbul. He has founded (1992) Toplumbilim review and co-founded (2005) Plato magazine in Istanbul.
Ahu Antmen is a lecturer, art critic and writer. She lectures on 20th Century and Contemporary Art at Marmara University Faculty of Fine Arts. Antmen’s recent works, published in Turkey, include “Trends in 20th Century Western Art, Art History and Feminist Criticism” and monographs on Turkish artists Ali Teoman Germaner and Hale Tenger. She writes regularly for Radikal daily.
Haşim Nur Gürel is writing since 1983 on international visual arts and about visual arts in Turkey. His essays were published in art magazines such as “Sanat Çevresi”, "Türkiye’de Sanat" and "Genç Sanat" and in newspapers such as Cumhuriyet. In the 1998-2008 period he has written for the most comprehensive virtual museum project in Turkey, "Eczacıbaşı Virtual Museum www.sanalmuze.org” his brainchild and with his writings he tried to increase the number and awareness of art lovers in Turkey. Since 1982 he has curated or co-curated more than a hundred exhibitions in galleries and museums. He is a member of the Turkish branch of AICA since 1992. He is also carrying on with his painting career and regularly opens exhibitions. Haşim Nur Gürel, in 2004 curated Istanbul Modern Art Museum’s opening exhibition "Observation–Interpretation-Multiplicity" Istanbul Modern’s 2005 Permanent Collection Exhibition “Intersecting Times” and in 2006 the Permanent Collection Exhibition “Modern Experiences” and “Fikret Mualla Retrospektive (2005), "Modern Sculpture–Memory and Scale"(2006) with Levent Çalıkoğlu and Ali Akay. Haşim Nur Gürel also contributed to the development of the Istanbul Art Fair by participating to its Advisory Committees.
Levent Çalıkoğlu is an art critic and curator. He is currently the Chief Curator at Istanbul Museum of Modern Art, Turkey. Çalıkoğlu has degrees in art history and museum studies and is a lecturer at the Art Management Department, Yıldız Technical University in Istanbul. He has written extensively and published both articles and books on Modern and Contemporary Turkish Art. Since 1998 he has curated exhibitions on a national and international scale for institutions and museums. He is also an art consultant for Dr. Nejat Eczacıbaşı Foundation and the Akbank Cultural Centre.
Emre Baykal is a curator based in Istanbul. He has been a Director of the Istanbul Biennial and Director of Exhibitions at Santralistanbul, where he organized the show ‘Modern and Beyond’, covering Turkish art from 1950 to 2000. Among his other projects is the 24th Istanbul Contemporary Artists Exhibition. He is the Director of Exhibitions at Arter. He is also the author of a book on Kutluğ Ataman, “You Tell Me About Yourself Anyway”.
Ayşegül Sönmez took art history classes comparing medieval and early renaissance Italian Art by Claudio Pizzoruso at the Siena University. She has a master’s degree at the visual arts faculty of Marmara University. Her master’s thesis was about Turkish Modernist paintings from between 1908-1954. She worked as columnist for different daily newspapers like Milliyet, and Birgün since 1997. She worked as an editor for the Marie Claire Maisson magazine. She has been working for the Radikal newspaper for more than 2 years and every Monday her column is published in this quality newspaper. She curated 2000 L'Art Dans Le Monde Paris/ Turkish section, Halil Altındere and Aydan Mürtezaoğlu. 2005 Mine Art Gallery, 15 Artists present their favorite LP's. She was the president of AICA Turkey 2009-2010. She was in the Arts and Philosophy jury for Kyoto Awards 2010.