Talk by Murat Tabanlıoğlu

AKM: Conveying the 20th century
building to the 21st century

Salt Galata

November 6, 2012 18.30

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Hayati Tabanlioglu, Atatürk Kültür Merkezi’nin ilk eskizleri (1956)
Hayati Tabanlıoğlu, Atatürk Cultural Center first sketches (1956)

SALT Galata, Auditorium

The series of events organized for The Performance of Modernity: ATATÜRK KÜLTÜR MERKEZİ, 1946-1977 continues with a presentation on Atatürk Kültür Merkezi’s (AKM/Ataturk Cultural Center) renovation by Murat Tabanlıoğlu.

In the 1940s İstanbul Municipality envisioned a venue in the city for opera and ballet, like La Scala or the Vienna Opera. The construction of the building, then known as “İstanbul Opera,” started on October 29, 1946. When Hayati Tabanlıoğlu was appointed to the project in 1956, he suggested that the building could become a cultural center rather than only housing opera and ballet.

One of the few modern buildings designed by a Turkish designer in post-Republic Turkey, AKM is significant for the proficiency of its infrastructure and equipment, which is on the same scale with period buildings in Europe. Performance spaces require an immense technical infrastructure that normally remains back-stage and hidden from the audience. While, the technical spaces and planning for AKM were designed to world-class specifications, as for any building of this age, AKM needs a technical overhaul to meet contemporary requirements.

The project of renovating AKM can also be discussed within broader conversations about whether or not it makes sense to preserve buildings from the 60s and 70s that are no longer technically proficient. Internationally, buildings that were notorious and innovative for their time are being abandoned in favor of building anew rather than attempting to restore outmoded technology.

Murat Tabanlıoğlu (RIBA, Chartered Member; AIA International Associate Member) studied architecture at Technische Universität Wien and graduated in 1992. He founded Tabanlıoğlu Architects in cooperation with Dr. Hayati Tabanlıoğlu in İstanbul in 1990. Besides his atelier program at İstanbul Bilgi University, he lectures at universities and various international platforms. As a jury member, in addition to his international contributions at AIA and WAF, Tabanlıoğlu serves on the Master Jury for the 2013 Cycle of the Aga Khan Award for Architecture.

The talk will be held in Turkish.