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Memories of the Forgotten

Written by Anja Pross on . Posted in The Passenger

Exhibition in a Former Jewish Mansion in Constantinople – Today Hotel Adahan Istanbul

“Memories of the Forgotten”, the second exhibition that came out of the collaboration between Artshift and Adahan Hotel Istanbul, takes place between 7 March – 14 April at the Adahan, a town mansion of the Camondo family, a famous Jewish family during the Otttoman Empire in Constantinopl. The exhibition was developed around the phrase “sustain, contain, recycle” and features works by Ahu Akgun, Didem Erbas, Dilan Ozdemir, Eser Epozdemir and Hera Buyuktascıyan.

  • Bildschirmfoto 2013-04-10 um 17.42.45

  • Bildschirmfoto 2013-04-10 um 17.42.00

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  • Bildschirmfoto 2013-04-10 um 17.43.47

  • Bildschirmfoto 2013-04-10 um 17.44.06

  • Bildschirmfoto 2013-04-10 um 17.44.21

  • Bildschirmfoto 2013-04-10 um 17.44.39

“Contain, sustain, recycle” are terms used causally on a daily basis and generally refer to solid, material “things”. However, is it possible to contain, sustain, and recycle a building? The word “recycle” here does not necessarily indicate architectural restoration, although restoration is the most important part of recycling. Perhaps the real question is “what can be recycled”?

“Memories of the Forgotten” consists of works based on this question and the story of how the building that houses the exhibition was recycled. Adahan was constructed in the mid-19th century as an apartment block by the Camondo family, one of Istanbul’s most prominent families of the time, and was used as such for almost 100 years. Later on it was transformed into an office block and then abandoned. After remaining unoccupied for some years, Adahan was eventually “recycled” through a long restoration process that culminated in 2012. It is currently used as a hotel.

The Adahan Hotel in Istanbul used to be in the 19th century the town mansion of Camondo, a famous Jewish family during the Otttoman Empire

What happened to the memories the building acquired over the years, the lives and events it witnessed? Where are the memories of those who shared the building’s life contained and sustained? The artists exhibited in “Memories of the Forgotten” tried to find the answers to those questions by recycling the remains of those memories in their works. In the meanwhile it turned into a quest for the collective memory of the city.

written by Ruşen Aktaş

07.03.2013 /// 14.04.2013

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