Most of artists in Istanbul go to Beyoğlu and its surrounding districts. Especially the districts of Cihangir and Galata are densely populated with artists and studios. There are some meeting places (cafes, bars and restaurants) that artists in these districts go to. Firuzağa cafe in Cihangir and Urban cafe around Galatasaray Lisesi on Istiklal Street are the places where artists spend time talking to friends and colleagues. Asmalımescit Street, a street located in Tunel with many restaurants, bars and cafes, is another place visited by artists in order to come together, and especially visiting foreign artists. Some of the artists prefer to live in Galata and Tepebaşı because the costs of rent in Cihangir have sky-rocketed in the last few years. Istanbul is an expensive city in many ways, but living expenses are most costly in Nişantaşı, Cihangir and Kadıköy, where art activities tend to concentrate. Nişantaşı, an up-scale district with many galleries, is the place where Turkey’s upper class likes to shop. Beyoğlu is a more cosmopolitan place that hosts a lot of artist initiatives and galleries, as well as most Consulates. Garanti Platform is hosting the most important residency program and is located in Beyoğlu. Most foreign artists start their exploration of Istanbul’s cultural scene here. Babylon is the most preferred place for concerts that artists attend. Peyote, is another stage for music but due to its underground feeling it is another meeting place for the art scene, supporting many music groups and sponsoring many art activities.
For materials go to:
Balcı Stationary (drawing materials)
Karum Stationary (painting and drawing materials)
Mektup Stationary (painting and drawing materials)
Kabalcı (painting and drawing materials and bookstore)
For tapes/dvd’s and copyshops the district of Besiktas, especially near Besiktas Çarsi is recommended.