Istanbul Joins the International Art Fair Beat

Aslı Torcu, Maşallah, 215x340cm, Kağıt Üzerine Karışık Teknik, 2011 smaller


If you’re headed to the 12th Istanbul Biennial in September, clear some space in your calendar. A new Turkish art fair, Art Beat Istanbul, will premiere Sept. 14–18, timed this year to coincide with the Biennial. While there is already the annual Contemporary Istanbul fair, which is devoted to Turkish participants and will have its sixth edition in November, Art Beat is the first fair in the city to welcome international dealers.

The fair will host about two dozen galleries. Those currently listed on the website are Turkish, but for three: New York’s LTMH Gallery, Berlin’s Michael Janssen, and The Third Line, from Dubai, all of whom represent some Turkish artists. In addition to booths for each gallery, the fair will offer a lower level for special projects, for which the organizers have asked galleries to propose works which lend themselves to larger spaces.

Taking place at the Lüfti Kirdar Convention and Exhibition Center, Art Beat Istanbul will be helmed by Arhan Kayar, the Istanbul cultural impresario behind events like Istanbul Design Week and the Turkish pavilion at Expo 2000. “Our aim,” says Kayar in a press release, “is to create a unique destination for art professionals and investors and to introduce Istanbul’s galleries and artists to the world.”