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Short history


Turkey has a rich historical and cultural heritage. Its geographical location has made it into a crossroads and center of many civilizations over the centuries. Traces of this wealth of civilizations, peoples and cultures can still be found, and visited, in Turkey today. Images and art works such as sculpture and architecture that belong to the Hittitie, Lydian, Greek, Hellenistic, Urartian, Roman, Byzantine, Seljuk, and Anatolian Principalities, and to the Ottoman Empire, have contributed to the development of Turkish artistry over the centuries. In other countries which also feature such wealth of heritage, contemporary practices in the visual art field risk that the past is the main attraction and that the further development of art is stilted. The reason is that all human and other resources in the cultural field are directed to the preservation of the past. This is also partly true for Turkey insofar that for the common public art and culture still are mostly tied to heritage. However there have been a couple of historic movements that contributed to the fact that Turkey also has a rapidly developing contemporary art scene today.