Büyükada Songlines

Istanbul Design Biennial Ends with A New Project

Organised by the Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts (İKSV), the 5th Istanbul Design Biennial – Empathy Revisited: Designs for more than one reached an end with a new project titled Büyükada Songlines.

Designed by Studio Ossidiana (Alessandra Covini, Giovanni Bellotti with Sze Wing Chan, Marie Saladin, Lyubov Viller, Mariagiulia Pistonese, Daniel Marshall) in collaboration with Sera Tolgay, Merve Yucel, Kerim Bayer, Ahmet Topbas, Tamer Giray and realised with the support of Stimuleringsfonds, Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality, Adalar Municipality and Consulate General of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Istanbul, Büyükada Songlines is a floating garden populated by plants, soil, insects and birds.

It was opened to visit in Büyükada (the largest island in the Prince’s Islands archipelago) on 23 June 2021, before heading towards the mainland on 30 June to welcome its visitors in the Golden Horn.

On 12 July 2021, the project sailed back to Büyükada, its permanent destination. Both a design project and a journey, the garden hosted people and other animals, events and conversations, becoming a nomadic pavilion populated by the life and the stories of the archipelago.

Hosting unique research features regarding the soils and minerals of the islands, the floating garden was animated by a programme co-curated by The Young Curators Group; Dünya Mirası Adalar (World Heritage Islands) and Deniz Yaşamını Koruma Derneği (Marine Life Conservation Society) in June. The programme titled ‘Ecology Marathon’, was hosted by World Heritage Islands and the Marine Life Conservation Society between 24-29 June, featuring 14 events. Twelve events were broadcast live from the Istanbul Design Biennial’s Instagram account in Turkish, while two events were held via Zoom.

The permanent works presented to the city by the 5th Istanbul Design Biennial

The permanent installations within the scope of the New Civic Rituals of the 5th Istanbul Design Biennial, which started in October 2020, can be seen at various points in Istanbul.

Point Cloud by Soft Baroque at Aykut Barka Park, Public Devices for Therapy by Soraia Gomes Teixeira at Etiler Artists Park, Desiccate With Care by public works with Freddie Wiltshire and Billy Adams at the Fenerbahçe Park Community Garden, Germinator by SKREI with Francisca Sottomayor & Sofia Magalhães at the Fenerbahçe Park Community Garden, Solar Kitchen by Martí Guixé at Istanbul Bilgi University santralistanbul Campus, The Revolution Woodstove by Bits to Atoms at Karaköy Pier, Sundial of the Blind by Eli Bensusan at Moda Coastal Park, and Dansbana! Kalamış, by Dansbana! at Kalamış Park are all open to visitors in Istanbul.

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