17th Istanbul Biennial

September 17 - November 20, 2022

Pera Museum hosts the Istanbul Biennial organised by the Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts (İKSV) since 1987, with its 17th edition, curated by Ute Meta Bauer, Amar Kanwar and David Teh.

The 17th Istanbul Biennial brings together people and processes, a gathering of more than 50 projects, each the fruit of long-term research and collaboration, each offering resources that the biennial aims to share, amplify and disperse. Prepared over three years of uncertainty and unprecedented isolation, it is above all an invitation to spend time together, thinking, talking, reading, viewing and listening in public, an invitation to ask and questions, and question answers.

Can a biennial be a newspaper? Can it be an archive, reimagined? Could it be fluid like water, a sea of sensations that flow through everyone? Could it be an afternoon of shared learning, of insights gained from old songs, from the birds, the grass, the fish, the buffaloes, or from the living soil? Could it be a season spent sealed in a bottle, fermenting? Or a concert, a series of podcasts or street parades or protests? Could we touch the earth and think together?

The 17th Istanbul Biennial spans 12 exhibition venues in the Beyoğlu, Kadıköy, Fatih and Zeytinburnu districts, as well as over 50 bookstores, second-hand booksellers, hospitals, nursing homes, cafes, metro stops and a radio station.

Over 500 artists, thinkers, writers, poets, researchers, architects, radio hosts, fishermen, activists, stand-up comedians, conductors, ethnomusicologists, ornithologists and many others contribute to the biennial individually or through collective work with local communities.

Image Credits 

Nepal Picture Library, Mass protest, Nepal, 1981
Nepal Picture Library archive
Photography: Hisila Yami

Gülsün Karamustafa, Insecure, 2022
Video still

Sim Chi Yin, One Day We'll Understand, 2018

Yehwan Song
, cascadingspiral.com, 2022

17th Istanbul Biennial

Pera Film is hosting the film program of the 17th Istanbul Biennial. Curated by Ute Meta Bauer, Amar Kanwar and David Teh, the program includes 22 films.

Pera Learning

Colors of the Earth
17th Istanbul Biennial Learning Programs

Pera Museum Learning Programs organizes Colors of the Earth in parallel to the 17th Istanbul Biennial and inspired by the projects of the artists exhibited at the museum for different age groups, to be made available online and face to face.

Mid-term Workshops

Pera Museum Learning Programs organizes Mid-term Workshops on 15-20 November, inspired by the projects of the artists of 17th Istanbul Biennial exhibited at the museum.

Medicinal Herbs in Byzantium

Medicinal Herbs in Byzantium

Knowledge of plants and the practice of healing are closely entwined. The toxic or hallucinogenic nature of some roots, and the dangers associated with picking them, conferred a mythical or magical character and power. 

A Night at Pera Museum

A Night at Pera Museum

Celebrating its 10th anniversary this year, Pera Museum invites artist Benoît Hamet to reinterpret key pieces from its collections, casting a humorous eye over ‘historical’ events, both imagined and factual.

The Success of an Artist

The Success of an Artist

Pera Museum presents an exhibition of French artist Félix Ziem, one of the most original landscape painters of the 19th century. The exhibition Wanderer on the Sea of Light presents Ziem as an artist who left his mark on 19th century painting and who is mostly known for his paintings of Istanbul and Venice, where the city and the sea are intertwined.