5TH ISTANBUL DESIGN BIENNIAL WELCOMES 2021

Organised by the Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts (İKSV), the 5th Istanbul Design Biennial continuous until the end of April 2021.

Curated by Mariana Pestana with Sumitra Upham and Billie Muraben with the title Empathy Revisited: Designs for more than one, the biennial kicked off last October with the aim of bringing together ideas and projects that seek to define a new role for design based on empathy. Designers have adopted sensitive, diplomatic, sometimes therapeutic functions, with the aim of connecting us with one another but also with the world around us, with other species, with microorganisms, soil, water and even the universe.

The Biennial’s Library of Land and Sea programme at ARK Kültür and the exhibition at Pera Museum came to an end on 15 November, however New Civic Rituals installations, the digital video series titled Critical Cooking Show, and the ‘activations’ programme, talks and workshops are open.

There is a video tour with the biennial curators along with the Young Curators Group Nur Horsanalı, Ulya Soley and Eylül Şenses, take us on a tour of the biennial’s Library of Land and Sea programme at ARK Kültür and the works at Pera Museum, as well as the installations spread across the city of Istanbul under New Civic Rituals programme.

Two projects previously installed at the Beşiktaş Pier as part of New Civic Rituals are now moved to their permanent locations. Point Cloud by Soft Baroque is now at Aykut Barka Park and Public Devices for Therapy by Soraia Gomes Teixeira can be visited at Etiler Artists Park. Dansbana! Kalamış, the project by Dansbana!, which is a new spot for dancing designed to encourage women’s visibility in public spaces, opened at Kalamış Park. The visitors can connect to the installation’s speaker via bluetooth and dance to their favourite tunes.

Furthermore, the Empathy Sessions, which can be referred to as the ‘philosophical axis’ of the biennial, will be carried on to the digital realm and offered to a wider range of audience. Exploring how food exchange, preparation and consumption relates to urgent ecological, economic and geopolitical conditions impacting contemporary culture today, The Critical Cooking Show series encourages one to become not just a cook, but a critical cook. The videos can be streamed via biennial’s website and e-flux architecture.

Also, as part of New Civic Rituals, 5 more projects will open in April 2021. Microbial Fruits of Istanbul by Orkan Telhan and elii and Desiccate With Care by public works with Freddie Wiltshire and Billy Adams will be at Kuzguncuk Urban Garden, Solar Kitchen by Martí Guixé will be at Turkey Design Council in Kuzguncuk Pier, and Studio Ossidiana’s nomadic pavilion Büyükada Songlines will float between Büyükada and Golden Horn.

Image: IKSV

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