After the successful Biennale about India, which presented the subcontinent's contemporary culture in 2006, the festival directors decided to travel to the Bosphorus, the legendary border river between Europe and Asia, and to make Turkey the focus of our festival in 2008. State theatre and state ballet will be present, as will independent groups and individual artists. Musicians of all genres, full-length feature films and short films, established authors and those yet to be discovered, visual artists from various contexts.
After the successful Biennale about India, which presented the subcontinent’s contemporary culture in May 2006, the festival directors decided to travel to the Bosphorus, the legendary border river between Europe and Asia, and to make Turkey the focus of our festival in 2008.
Whereas Turkish writers especially have attracted attention lately (notably the winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature Orhan Pamuk who has caused passionate controversy in his country), there are many more interesting discoveries to make in the fields of the performing and the visual arts as well as in music and film. For beyond its dazzling metropolis Istanbul, which fascinates with its treasures of the Ottoman Empire on the one hand, and a flourishing artistic landscape on the other, we only have a vague idea of the work of contemporary Turkish artists. Therefore, we are looking forward to gaining and presenting insight beyond the prevalent stereotypes.
Moreover, there are quite a number of other aspects in favour of Turkey as the focus theme. The question of the country’s identity is highly significant for us, since Turkey’s EU accession has so far been the biggest social and economic challenge for the EU, which would, after all, share borders with countries such as Iraq and Iran. Does Turkey really function as a bridge between Europe and Asia? Which part will it play in a future Europe? Which consequences would the accession have for the European constituitonal law and the future European constitution? These are among the questions we have been asking in our Biennale-Preview events, which have been taking place since the beginning of the year, and they will also be some of the topics in the discursive part of the festival.
As in previous festivals, we will cooperate with many of Bonn’s numerous cultural, academic and media institutions. This year, we are also aiming at a closer cooperation with the city’s schools. How can we introduce local students to contempory Turkish culture beyond preconceived stereotypes, and how do young people with a Turkish background contribute to our modern culture? But of course, art will be at the centre of everything! The enormous variety, cosmopolitanism and vivacity of Turkish culture will be presented at the Biennale Bonn :Bosphorus 2008. Artists from all disciplines will travel to Bonn and, we hope, will transform the entire city into an open stage for contemporary Turkish culture. State theatre and state ballet will be present, as will independent groups and individual artists. Musicians of all genres, full-length feature films and the latest developments in Turkish short films, established authors and those yet to be discovered, visual artists from various contexts – they all invite you to join us at the Biennale Bonn and to renew your image of Turkey in the most entertaining of ways.
16:00, Künstlerforum Bonn and
group exhibition with Zeynap Rushan Sahinoglu, Karin Meiner, Susanne Krell, Didem Dayi Tirek and Erol Kinali
Presentation of the WALKING NEWSPAPER
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