From Mekteb-i Sultani to Galatasaray Lycee


From Mekteb-i Sultani to Galatasaray Lycee

Opened on 1 September 1868 upon the orders of Sultan Abdülaziz, while Mekteb-i Sultani was conceived as a training ground for bureaucrats who would staff the state's newly-designed agencies, it was thought that its students should be inculcated in the ways of international diplomacy and European culture. Among the lessons that were included in the curriculum with this idea in mind were European art and literature and it was due to their influence that major artists emerged both from Ottoman-period Mekteb-i Sultani and from Republican-period Galatasaray Lycée. Because of the role that they played in the initial formative stage of painting among the Ottomans, the art instruction provided at Mekteb-i Sultani, the instructors and their artistic personalities, as well as the artists who studied there are all matters of importance. The primary aim of this exhibition was to draw attention to an attitude towards education which, for over a century in the years from 1868 to 1968, upheld strict standards of quality, fostered an undying love of art from generation to generation, and transformed that love into professionalism. The foreword of the exhibition catalogue is written by Candan Erçetin. In addition to the works of Galatasaray artists, the catalogue includes impressions from Paris since most graduates went to Paris to develop their art.

Date of Publication: 2009
Number of pages:


7 Acknowledgements

11 Foreword
Suna, İnan & İpek Kıraç

15 Foreword
Candan Erçetin

23 From Mekteb-i Sultani to Galatarasay, Contrubution to Painting Instruction and Art
Semra Germaner

51 Content and Methodology of Painting Classes
Gülsün Güvenli

75 Galatasaray Lycée, the İstanbul Academy of Fine Arts and Parisian Studios
Deniz Artun

115 Galatasaray as am Enclave of Pera
Seza Sinanlar

143 ‘Whatever I Think of Galatasaray I Think of Exhibitions’
Ömer Faruk Şerifoğlu

197 Catalogue

269 Biographies

From Mekteb-i Sultani to Galatasaray Lycee

Tevfik Fikret's famous couplet, which compares the West to a horizon beckoning to those who long for intellectual pursuits and calls Mekteb-i Sultani the East's first window opening onto that horizon, is an explicit expression of the affirmation of the notion of modernization among the Ottomans and of a yearning for Western civilization.

From Mekteb-i Sultani to Galatasaray Lycee<br> Painters