Zeyrek Cinili Hamam, Istanbul
30.09.2023 – 05.11.2023
Before resuming its original function as a bathhouse almost 500 years after its foundation, Zeyrek Çinili Hamam presents a contemporary art exhibition for the first and the last time set within the historic baths and Byzantine cisterns.
Curated by Anlam de Coster, Healing Ruins draws inspiration from the palimpsests of the past uncovered by the hammam’s 13-year-long restoration that became a meticulous archaeological excavation. Showcasing the works of 22 artists from Turkey and abroad, including new site-specific commissions, the exhibition is on view from 30 September through 5 November 2023.
Healing Ruins explores the possibilities of transformation at both individual and societal levels through the discovery and restoration of historical remnants and the layers revealed during the process.
The exhibition’s English title, Healing Ruins, carries a triple meaning. Instead of emphasizing that ruins are inherently healing, it focuses on how the act of repairing historical, societal, and spiritual ruins might have a transformative effect on us. The third interpretation, maybe not immediately apparent at first sight, where the word “ruin” is read as a verb instead of a noun, implies that purification, creation, and repair can only occur through arduous processes - just like the rituals of the hammam.
Curator: Anlam de Coster
Artists: Erol Akyavaş, Francesco Albano, Mehtap Baydu, Hera Büyüktaşcıyan, Dorothy Cross, Candeğer Furtun, Adrian Geller, Alice Guittard, Başak Günak, Cecilia Granara, Maryam Hoseini, Ahmet Doğu İpek, Renée Levi, Maude Maris, Lara Ögel, Zoë Paul, Daniel Silver, Ayça Telgeren, Panos Tsagaris, Ezgi Türksoy, Elif Uras, Marion Verboom