Contemporary art comes to the people of Istanbul under the title of “Portable Art” The portable art projects are to be found exhibiting throughout the 39 districts of Istanbul. The first exhibit opened in November of 2008 in Kartal, at the Bülent Ecevit Cultural Center. Throughout 2010, the Portable Art project has continued to move around the city. The goal of Istanbul 2010 European Capital of Culture Visual Arts Directorate is to disseminate contemporary art to the People.
Prior to this project, contemporary art was only available in a limited number of places and audiences in Istanbul. This reality limited the number of people who could actually experience modern art. With the inception of Portable Art, the reach of this contemporary exhibit will extend to all of the 39 districts of Istanbul – bringing modern art to all of the people of Istanbul.Artists invited to contribute to this project were artist initiatives, collectives, independent artists and curators who could present portable art packages involving interactive art which involve audience participation. The aim of the Portable Art project is to develop a plural relationship between the work, the artists and the audience. The final goal is to find new audiences for contemporary art and exposure for new artists and their works in their own city, Istanbul in 2010.
One of the projects and exhibits to be held in the Portable Art Project is Memory City, the curator is Derya Yücel and the featured artists involved in the project are as follows:
Ahmet Elhan, Aslımay Altay, Berna İpek, Burcu Yağcıoğlu, Ceren Oykut, Emel Akın, Evrim Kavcar, Gülsün Karamustafa, Gözde İlkin, İlke İlter, İpek Duben, İrfan Önürmen, Kezban Arca Batıbeki, Nancy Atakan, Nermin Er, Olgu Ülkenciler, Ragıp Basmazölmez, and Yeşim Ağaoğlu.
Not only does this project democratize art, but it increases awareness of contemporary art and urban culture in the city of Istanbul.