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The Logbook of the Ottoman Navy

Ships, Legends, Sailors

May 15 - October 4, 2009

Ottoman Principality was introduced to the dark sea of the Middle Ages early in the 14th century. The battles with the Venetians and the Genoese, conquests in Rumelia, and the establishment of the first shipyards all occurred during this period. As the conquest of İstanbul marked the end of the period of transition from Principality to Empire, the foundations of a strong navy that would unite the Mediterranean and the Black Sea over a political geography were laid. The power of the corsairs diminished by the end of the Renaissance; Barbaros Hayreddîn Pasha personified the golden age of Ottoman sea power. The discovery of the New World had instigated a revolution in the maritime world. Traditional Venetian galleys gave way to Spanish galleons and manpower was replaced by wind power. The Ottoman navy assumed a pioneering role in the process of modernization that extended from the 18th to the 20th century. Naval education in the Western sense, the implementation of new technologies and the organization of a modern fleet were all consequences of this period. Advancing from the galley to the battlecruiser, Ottoman sea power had the final say in the affairs of the Empire. “The Logbook of the Ottoman Navy: Ships, Legends, Sailors” exhibition intertwines three distinct, yet integrated mythologies of the sea. The imprint of the ships in Ottoman seafaring history, the battles they were engaged in and the heroes who became legendary in these battles assume their places on the stage of civilization in all their historic magnitude. At the center of the construct lies the extraordinary adventure of the transition from traditional to modern seafaring methods. The quest for power, the demolished thrones and man's identification of his fate with the sea is perhaps the oldest story behind this adventure. The cornerstones of a long history that extends from the legacy of a 16th century Ottoman galley to the battlecruiser, Yavuz, is brought to light through the memories of seamen.

Exhibition Catalogue

The Logbook of the Ottoman Navy

The Logbook of the Ottoman Navy

Ottoman Principality was introduced to the dark sea of the Middle Ages in early 14th century. The battles with the Venetians and the Genoese, conquests in Rumelia, and the establishment...

Fluid Identities  Creating an Identity / Hybrid Identities

Fluid Identities Creating an Identity / Hybrid Identities

A firm believer in the idea that a collection needs to be upheld at least by four generations and comparing this continuity to a relay race, Nahit Kabakcı began creating the Huma Kabakcı Collection from the 1980s onwards. Today, the collection can be considered one of the most important and outstanding examples among the rare, consciously created, and long-lasting ones of its kind in Turkey.

A Solitary Eagle in the Sinai Desert

A Solitary Eagle in the Sinai Desert

John Frederick Lewis is considered one of the most important British Orientalist artists of the Victorian era. Pera Museum exhibited several of Lewis’ paintings as part of the Lure of the East exhibition in 2008 organized in collaboration with Tate Britain.

Louis Isadore Kahn (1901-1974)

Louis Isadore Kahn (1901-1974)

Louis Isadore Kahn was born in 1901 to a Jewish family in Pärnu, Russia (today Estonia), far from Philadelphia where he spent his whole life, worked, fell in love, and breathed his last. Kahn family emigrated to America when he was five years old.