Perşembe Pazarı Projects
As foreign artists who have been living and working in Perşembe Pazarı, we are a curiosity and a reminder that this neighborhood is heading for another change. We consider gentrification a non-topic: It is simply the nature of a city to transform over time. Our main concern is to capture a moment in the history of a place we have called home for the past three years. We call this endeavor the Perşembe Pazarı Projects (PPP).
PPP has many parts that will be exhibited all together in 2013.
PPP Segments so far:
November, 2012 - Welcome to the Dollhouse
Anika Weshinskey conceived and directed aerialists Sevinç Gürmen and Kate Beckel in a family drama involving aerial silks, static trapeze, foot juggling, and dancing. After the performance there was a tour of the neighborhood, showcasing the shops of men who have made or helped make the circus equipment and sets used at Caravansarai.
June, 2012 - Perşembe Pazarı Projects Preview
On Sundays, the hardware shops of Perşembe Pazarı are closed but we are open! Sound, visual, and performance installations inspired by Perşembe Pazarı were on display for one evening only. In addition to art installations by Caravansarai, Pat Arnao (USA), and Fiona Davies (AUS) there was Street Badminton, foot juggling and trapeze exhibition, and a BBQ.
2012: Accumulation / When You Worry
Truly inspired by the materials available in the very near vicinity, Pat Arnao creates monumental hanging sculptures, showing the beauty in materials designed for function.
2011-12: Blood on Silk: Trade
Taking full advantage of Caravansarai's location in a commercial district, Fiona Davies creates a three screen video, shot from the terrace of the Caravansarai building - the owners of the surrounding hardware shops are opening their gates, half-heartedly sweeping their stoops, the first cars and trucks claim their space in the narrow streets.
2012: Tea String Thing
Puzzled how their three block street can support two active çaycılar (tea sellers), Julie Upmeyer and Anika Weshinskey launch an investigation. Just how many teas do each of the stores on their street consume in one day? For their installation 'String Thing', they illustrate their data by tying one string for each cup of tea that each of the stores drank in one day, from the shop to the tea seller that services them.
2012: The Garden of the Ottoman Bank
The first time Julie Upmeyer crawled out onto the (then) roof of the (now) Caravansarai building, she looked down into the hardware mall below and imagined that it must have, at some time, been a garden. Despite finding no evidence to support this theory, she continued alone in her fantasy, imagining how lovely it must have been for the Ottoman bankers to enjoy a moment alone, in lush green surroundings, sitting by the fountain or enjoying the shade of the pavilion.
2011-12: Layered - Karaköy
Julie Upmeyer's photograph sculptures - s single photograph is printed 8 - 10 times, each layer cut out, recreating the scene in three physical dimensions. Taking inspiration from the rare Turkish craft of low-relief, layered photographs, Julie Upmeyer uses photographs taken in the hardware district of Karaköy.
2010: Tea, Tavla and Tall Tales
The Persembe Pazari in Istanbul’s Karaköy neighborhood has been occupied almost entirely by hardware and construction suppliers for the past 30 years. But, like most of the rest of Istanbul, it has multiple histories, official and contrived, mundane and mythical. What is recorded? What is true? We’re collecting all of it; the hearsay and the text-book articles, the websites, the rumors and the ‘undisputed facts’ inviting artists to incorporate these stories into the renovations of our building.
2010: Renovation of Tan Han
At the time of purchase, our building was a typical Persembe Pazari, 1980s-style Is Han, a building filled with lots of independent shops and offices. Our building was about half-full. In short, over the course of a little more than a year's time, we persuaded the old tenants and tea seller to leave, passed our various military and municipal checks, gained permission for renovation and completely altered practically every wall and area of the building.