Looking at the Independent Art Scene of Istanbul As a Possible Study for the Future Positioning of European Cultural Institutions

This article was presented at the 11th International Conference on Arts and Cultural Management (AIMAC 2011), 3-6 July 2011, Antwerp, Belgium

Esra A. Aysun, M.A
Cultural Manager & Instructor

Department of Art Management (Yeditepe University)

Department of Music Business and Management (MIAM, İstanbul Technical University)

Co-Founder & Co-Director, CUMA / Contemporary Art Utopias

Esra A. Aysun is a cultural operator and a lecturer on arts management. She is the co-founder and co-director of CUMA and is consultant for theatre DOT. She has been lecturing on Arts and Culture Management at various universities as of 2004; is the local Coordinator in Turkey for Arts and Culture Program of the Open Society Foundation and a board member of IETM and Cimetta Fund.


Given the current climate that arts organizations are operating in any geography of the globe, challenged by both decreased endowments and increased competition for both contributed and earned revenue, entrepreneurialism stands as a key objective to pursue for all.

This paper aims to explore how the Istanbulian cases of cultural entrepreneurship, becoming more and more visible with their experience of European collaborations and their incentive of a local strategic cultural policy building as well as work for participative cultural development and cultural management can provide a different model for practices of cultural entrepreneurship in Europe.

The study relied on in-depth interviews with different actors including artists initiatives, NGOs, and private institutions, on their on the ground experience and perceptions of the cultural entrepreneurship at their locality focusing on their level of financial investment, use of cultural management and implementation of democratic participation.

Keywords: Cultural Entrepreneurship, creativity, Istanbul, cultural policy, funding.


As the year of European Capital of Culture is just over for Istanbul with the end of the 2010, the culture scene of the city is more active than ever, endeavoring to project its future and sustainability. Today, in Istanbul, not the state but the arts and cultural organizations of the civil society and the private sector lead the way to a dynamic creativity in the local and international artistic and cultural scene and start becoming a major driving force lobbying for the local cultural policies as well as strengthening the civil society. The driving force behind the entrepreneurship of these  “new arts institutions” of the 21st century in Istanbul though seem to lie the dichotomies of the local cultural scene that this paper will be focusing on.

Six years after the visit of Dragan Klaic, Istanbul is still “a booming and rapidly developing metropolis with a cultural infrastructure that is grossly inadequate for its 16 million inhabitants, and with high unemployment rates despite the city’s visible economic vitality”.[1] Even though cultural policies have had a major effect on the establishment of the contemporary Republic of Turkey, the culture and arts sector as of today is unfortunately underdeveloped compared to other industries and services.[2] Not only the contemporary but also the current art and cultural scene in Turkey function within an inadequate state support deprived of the necessary cultural policies. It should be emphasized that the coup d’état in 1980 left the civil society weak implying serious legal restrictions, creating a big gap among the state officials and the professionals of the culture sector.[3]

The experience of having the Istanbul 2010 ECOC Agency, too, widened afore mentioned gap with the many controversial discussions that it raised. Even though the acclamation of the ECOC title by Istanbul had been declared as the strength of the civil society and a symbol of bottom- up approach, the tenure of the 2010 ECOC witnessed many disappointments with lack of a strong effect on the existing cultural policies[4]. When the Atatürk Cultural Center was closed for renovation to transform it “ befitting the 21st century,”[5] the civil society fell into dispute being suspicious that the announced reconstruction would end up in total demolishment replacing it with a ‘multi-functional’ cultural center where congresses would surpass the artistic programming. The lawsuit led by the Union of the Workers of the Culture and Tourism is still unresolved leaving AKM closed since 2008.[6]

Instead of formulating a public fund to allocate resources and support to the artistic creation in the city in a system where grant giving foundations rarely exist or are poorly funded themselves, the state is willingly leaving the public domain to the hands of the private investors. The recent cultural entrepreneurship of the private companies establishing their own cultural institutions, creating an indisputable hegemony over the cultural scene is apparent. The Turkish counterparts of the DiMaggio’s ‘cultural capitalists’[7] are now pursuing their own cultural entrepreneurship. Involvement and ‘intervention’ of the Turkish corporations into the arts is inline with the neoliberal model in USA and UK in 1980’s, with the aim of regeneration of monetary capital through cultural capital (Wu, 2002:23). Simultaneously with this privatization, Turkey is still at a stage of phrasing its cultural policy for the first time and only as a result of an imposed necessity through its accession period of EU membership.[8] On the other hand, the relevance of culture and the arts to the needs of the society is still discussed on behalf of the government: The Prime Minister provoking the demolishing of an statue that he finds ‘freakish’[9] or Minister of Culture and Tourism phrasing a discussion about a possible termination of state theaters[10] as the most recent of so many. And it can also be observed that there is a general opinion prevalent among art professionals that the state’s relationship with contemporary art today will not undergo any reforms. The necessity for a funding model that would enable the emergence of independent organizations that would not pursue the policy of any government or private corporation and would be formed by artists or cultural management professionals has yet to emerge as a discussion topic.[11]

This paper will discuss the environment where state has fallen short of the contemporary artistic and cultural scene and investigate how the cultural entrepreneurship of the private sector and the civil initiations can be a driving force in creativity by focusing on the following cases: İstanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts (İKSV) (1973), Anadolu Kültür A.Ş (2002),İstanbul Modern (2004), ÇGSG Association of the Contemporary Performing Arts Initiative (2005/2007), BAS (2006), BIS Body Process Arts Association (2007), garajistanbul (2007), Arter (2010) and SALT (2011). One to one interviews were realized with all except SALT. Please see Index 1 for more detailed information about the case studies.

The Ambiguity of the Existing Local Cultural Infrastructures in Istanbul

I will be following Ünsal in her proposition that the cultural sector in Turkey should not be defined through full adoption of Western ways of ‘managing culture’ but as a “space of multiple presences and absences, a space where similarities and differences open up possibilities for manifold combinations.”[12] Certain challenges regarding the NGOs in Turkey’s cultural sector is fragmentation, limited management capacity, problems of sustainability, professionalism of staff, lack of cultural policies, insufficient spaces for performing or exhibiting art. (Ünsal: 2011). In addition to these statements, as a practitioner and a researcher, I believe that the basic deficiency of the sector is the one that is unspoken – that all of the cultural organizations of the civil society and the private enterprises suffer a clear legitimization as a cultural entity.

We can easily claim that other than those structures of the state, the culture actors of the private and the NGOs are left alone to their own entrepreneurship in an undefined and hence unstructured environment. Most of those cultural initiations in the civil society prefer to register as associations where as the private sector chose to be Foundations or for-profit corporations. As there are artists initiatives who prefer to not become legally structured, it must be noted that private sector, too is showing a similar approach by establishing their cultural enterprises as extensions of their marketing departments instead of creating new legal entities. Unlike the USA system in which arts is non-profit relying on culture of philanthropy, with arts organizations formed as 501(c)(3)[13], the Turkish equivalents that are associations and foundations are mainly for charity organizations and cannot provide the necessary legislations to fulfill the needs of the NGOs of arts and culture.

Even though there are important think tanks such as the Third Sector Foundation of Turkey (TUSEV) researching, capacity building and lobbying for the rights of the civil society, the arts and culture NGOs of the new era have yet not been recognized as another possible sub-sector to investigate and mature. We have no research done regarding the implementation of the legal structure for the cultural and artistic entities other than some statistical data. According to the survey of the History Foundation realized in 2005 on the NGOs in Turkey, covering some 3,268 NGOs operating at local, regional and national levels, around 9-10% are identified as artistic and cultural.[14] And as for the statistics of the Chamber of Associations, those associations registered with a mission within the realm of ‘culture’ are only 3647 within the country. [15] Another more recent study done in 2009 by the TUSEV though, does present the fact that associations of the civil society in Turkey face certain barriers to freedom.[16] The study clearly showed that the 1982 constitution and related laws drafted immediately after the Military intervention reflects an antidemocratic perception in which civil society is seen as a potential threat to the continuity of the state. The outcomes of the research draw a clear picture for the NGOs, which we can claim to reflect the conditions for NGOs of arts and culture as well: that a very limited number of organizations can benefit from the public benefit status for civil society organizations, there are restrictions on fundraising and there is a tax burden.[17]

As we approach our cases, it will be seen that İKSV and İstanbul Modern are established as foundations – İKSV being the only one with Public Benefit status; ARTER is the economic entity of the Vehbi Koç Foundation (VKF); whereas ÇGSG, BAS and BIS are registered as associations and garajistanbul is cooperation. Anadolu Kültür A.Ş. and SALT are both registered as for-profit companies yet Anadolu Kültür A.Ş. has an exception as it took the decision to announce itself as a company that would not distribute its profit to its shareholders.[18]

ARTER secures it’s funding from the endowment of its founding foundation by being structured as one of its economic entities instead of a foundation of its own[19]. Melih Fereli, the former Director of the IKSV and the current consultant for the arts and culture for the VKF, stated that this was agreed to be a better solution to avoid the bureaucracy of establishing a new foundation and to avoid risks of fundraising in a cultural environment that lacked grant-giving foundations for the arts.[20] He also mentioned the fact that all foundations are regarded as “charity foundations” by Ministry of Finance and regulated with certain restrictions in their activities of income generation.[21]

İKSV and İstanbul Modern that have endowments as foundations phrase a more stressful financial sustainability. Unlike their international counterparts in USA and Europe, none of the directors of the boards in İKSV or İstanbul Modern are obliged to pay or raise annual donations to the institutions.[22] And both institutions had to establish a for-profit company to generate income from renting their space to restaurants or opening gift shops whereas they lack necessary tax relief regulations on behalf of state that would enable them to accelerate donations. İKSV though, relying on its rooted and strong past with its private sponsors, created a new strategy of securing long-term sponsorships for its festivals[23] securing its endowment and breaking even as well as starting a membership program that currently has 2600 members bestowing the 7.5% of yearly budget.[24]

Among the three associations interviewed, ÇGSG is the only entity that has the potential to benefit from the legal structure of being an association. However, the founding artists who have started the network, refrained from registering it as an association for two years with the fear of a possible clash of artistic freedom with the rigidness of institutionalization as well as the negative connotations NGOs carried as symbols of the abuse of hierarchical power over the individual in reference to the political contamination before and during the military cue.[25] Hence, phrasing the initiative and not the association, the network did not accept any legal members but invited people to join the network informally through an e-group.  It has been overly stressed in my interview that the association status has been used only as a tool for getting funds and even the membership fee was never collected from the registered members. However, 2011 is being a new term of re-structuralization for ÇGSG, as the entire founder artists except one declined from their board membership leaving their seats to a new generation of cultural managers. The new board is working on a new strategy to transform ÇGSG into a lobbying association working for the rights of the sector. First move will be to communicate the informal members about the new strategy and ask them to become a legal member of the association with a membership fee.[26]

BAS is a perfect example to the “so-called” associations as it is initiated by one artist who invited her friends and colleagues to be board members and members of the association only on paper for its juridical status without any relation to the decision making of the activities. As this status though has not enabled BAS’s mission of publishing and selling artist books, Cennetoğlu had to also launch a for profit company on sole proprietorship to realize income generating activities to generate income for the association[27]. Not long after though, she had to end the activites of the for profit to escape the tax burden and is currently using the company of another colleague to realize the for profit activities.

BIS on the other hand was initiated by three artists for the will to create a more collective presence and sustainability for the amberFestival and all other artistic activities. The reason of setting up the structure in the form of an association is stated because it was seen as the best legal format that could enable a collective democracy and the possibility to apply to EU grants as an NGO[28]. However, despite all the work and enthusiasm, they could not yet evolve their members (colleagues, friends and family) on paper into real active members of the association. Yet, BIS has been holding sessions with volunteer management consultants as to make a strategic planning for the future and create ways of income to employ an administrative team.

As BAS and BIS are sustaining their incomes through EU funds and private sponsorship, BAS is more successful in the sense that it has secured its operational costs through EU grants and sponsorships and is making project based applications to European Foundations as well as attaining a moderate income from artist books it publishes. Cennetoğlu though confirmed that these provide BAS only to have a breakeven without any surplus.[29] As Cennetoğlu rejected the status of 2010 ECOC because of its political affinity and affiliation with the ruling party, BIS used the opportunity of opening its first office and establishing the 2010 edition of its amberFestival and various activities with the support of a 3 year grant from the Visual Directorate of the 2010 Agency. While Cennetoğlu confirms that she is content with having no employed staff and likes working with volunteers and interns as this condition gives her the freedom of not being institutionalized, both BIS and ÇGSG founders who also never had employed staff relying on their own volunteer work, assert that they feel burned out and hence are making plans to form an employed staff.

garajistanbul is set up as a ‘cooperation’ that offers a more collective version of a NGO also enabling income generation on behalf of the institution. In spite of the fact that performing arts in Turkey is set up as for-profit due to the necessity of having to sell tickets for performances, garajistanbul preferred to be a ‘cooperation’ with the purpose of being a roof structure for contemporary performing arts and to be able to apply to EU funds for European cultural cooperation projects.[30] garajistanbul has always been open about its legal structure and also announce it in their communication to stress the collective identity.

Although SALT is announced as the biggest and the new ‘autonomous’ cultural institution of Turkey in the local press yet with a lot of stress on its new structure of being a for profit corporation found by the Garanti Bank,[31] international press seem to regard it as a non for profit.[32] This dichotomy is actually not surprising as there had been a similar understanding also about the previous contemporary arts center of Platform Garanti, which Vasıf Kortun  -founding Director of both – openly phrased as non-for-profit.[33] Although it was true that Garanti bank sustained only the core activities of the previous gallery[34], this cannot be claimed to be for SALT’s glamour of architecture and administration. Whether or not the reason of the indication is of misusage and misinterpretation of the terminology “not-for-profit” or this is a proof of a conflicting pr strategy on local and international bases, these should be taken as a proof of how the arts institutions in Turkey are reluctant to state and perhaps not fully aware of the meaning of their legitimate formations.

Anadolu Kültür A.Ş is yet another interesting case of the legal dilemma of the arts institutions. It was founded with the incentive, the vision and the investment of a businessman – Osman Kavala – who led other intellectuals, artists and actors of the business world to also invest and support his dream of establishing a think-tank institution that would act for developing cultural rights and policies in Turkey. Kavala in his interview, openly explained the reason of starting Anadolu Kültür as a for-profit company instead of an NGO was the hesitation and mistrust because of the restrictions and control of the state at the time. However, with the changing Law of Associations and the current environment of the civil society, there is an upcoming plan of transforming into an association.

And in terms of the administration to accompany in the above-mentioned juridical statuses of these initiations, ÇGSG, BIS and BAS have no staff on payroll relying on volunteer work of their boards, members and interns while Anadolu Kültür and garajistanbul have a moderate number of staff on payroll in comparison with the fully developed administrative structures of İKSV, ARTER and SALT.

The land of no public funding for the contemporary arts

It should be underlined that other than those cultural institutions[35]operated by the state and the limited giving of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, there are no public agencies such as arts councils with a mission of public giving. State creates a big deficit in the culture sector by its minuscule annual share to the arts. [36]Although, film and music industries are more regulated mostly due to their income generating natures, those activities of performing arts get a limited share where as that to contemporary arts of visual even can be claimed not to exist. The only funding to the private theatres that had been active as of 1982[37] and which the sector still acknowledged with lots of criticism and charge of nepotism in terms of the distribution, was first abolished in 2006 to be restructured in 2007 to include local governments, associations and foundations with a stress of tourism[38]. Although this might give us a first sight relief and interpretation as the grant becoming more comprehensive in terms of the players of the civil society, state has been very discrete without any clarifications to the cultural sector about the application procedures.  

While the Directorate of Youth and Sports has successfully launched the sponsorship program for thesports in 2004[39], simultaneous changes for culture and arts cannot be claimed to have resulted in a similar success. The cultural institutions that were interviewed have stated that they were not able to use the bills passed by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism in 2004 – Circular no. 5228 on the encouragement of support activities in the field of culture proposing tax deductions on aids and donations for culture and cultural infrastructure and the Bill no. 5225 on Tax Incentives for Cultural Investments and Enterprises or have any acknowledgement on whether or not the companies they apply to for sponsorship do benefit from tax incentives. The reason for this is stated to be lack of certain regulations. Although one could claim that the companies could be using this inducement without proclamation, I would argue that the information is not transparent and clear enough from the government to the cultural organizations. None of them use this as a crucial tool in their lure to sponsorship.

However, there are cases when the cultural entrepreneurs do communicate with the state. İstanbul Modern’s use of its current venue was made possible only with Prime Minister’s approval as the opening was meant to coincide with Turkey’s EU accession talks in late 2004.[40] As another big power, İKSV, too is in close relation with the state through its festivals organized abroad dedicated to Turkish arts. Lastly İKSV opened its facilities to the Cultural Contact Point (CCP) Office of the EU Funds by providing it a permanent office. İstanbul Modern has just recently been announced as the first private museum under the premises of Ministry of Culture and Tourism.[41] And garajistanbul has been most proactive in connecting to the Ministry by its official Certificate of Culture Enterprise. Both of these institutions though have both declared that they were not still informed clearly or seen yet experienced the consequences of these recognitions. BIS and ÇGSG are effectively searching for contacts within the Ministry to be informed about any possible grants and with a purpose of being recognized as an independent council of performing arts influential on cultural policies.

Hence, Karaca’s proposition that “Turkish state – by what it does as well as what it does not do – actually creates and produces a framework that is successful in harnessing arts and cultural and artistic initiatives which are either privately sponsored or independently organized” in spite of the common belief that Turkey  ‘does not have an arts policy’ can lead us to the grassroots entrepreneurship of our cases.[42]

Additional support to the cultural organizations though has been increasingly available since 2003 through the grant schemes within the EU integration process, foreign national funding organizations, and international foundations.[43] As Karaca points out as a result of the low funding of the arts, Turkish arts organizations have been forced to be dependent on the support of the European cultural institutions and EU funding schemes just as they are dependent on the private sector for corporate support or philanthropy. In spite of Karaca’ s statement that “EU cultural exchange programs have been successful in facilitating the institutional incorporation of Turkey’s cultural sector into the administrative apparatus of the EU,” I assert that such an integration can only be haphazard and not sustainable unless the necessary re-formulization is done regarding the legal structuring of these cultural initiations.  Though Karaca sees its the establishment of CCP facilitating the institutional incorporation of the cultural sector into the European arena[44], I must note that even the İKSV as the strongest cultural NGO has not yet taken a step to make an EU application as it requires the 50% of the project budget to be invested by the applicant. Needless to say that as long as Turkish applicants are far from securing their operation budgets and endowments, none of the pr strategies to introduce the grant scheme will make any effect on increasing the number of applications to the calls. Whereas Istanbul Modern refrains from EU applications to the energy and finance consuming bureaucracy of the application and the implementation, BAS and BIS are the most positive in attitude. 

Concluding with the New Power Structures in the Scene: The New Cultural Entrepreneurs

The subjects of our cases of entrepreneurialism all share the same environment with its limitations and advantages in spite of their differences in their legal jurisdictions, relationship with state and EU and their possessions of financial sustainability. And Istanbul seems to be a perfect resource to provide the necessary conditions with its unpredictable social, political and economic settings to initiate Drucker’s “ad-hoc, autonomous, specific, and microeconomic” innovation. (Drucker: 2007)

Extending the ‘challenge of individuals facing the entrepreneurial society’, one should wrap up that initiations or enterprises too could exploit the challenges as opportunities. Role of the state is very contradictory for the entrepreneurs. While the missing functionality in the scene could be defined as the contribution of government institutions to protect and develop the cultural and symbolic capital as much as the economic one, one could expect the state only to overcome the bureaucratic barriers that complicate the artistic activities and let the cultural sector be autonomous and privatized. We could see in the case of Istanbul that the disconnection between politicians, local governments and artists could initiate a true environment for entrepreneurship.

The hybrid cases of entrepreneurships are still contemplating on their survival strategies trying to balance their instabilities with new approaches. Perhaps Aksoy’ s explanation that Istanbul does not rest on a culture of public space but “on sharp fault lines that could but do not destroy each other… concerning ethnic and religious identity, economic power and social access.” [45] can draft us a light. Hence, we may claim that this difference is reflected also in the different cultural outputs or “layers” existing simultaneously: The culture industry controlled by the State and local governments; the neo-liberal culture, creative industry of large pop concerts and festivals, television, fairs, shopping centres, etc. and that of the contemporary arts production controlled by private enterprises and civil formations. These cultural entrepreneurs of the civil society as much as the rest – artist initiatives, cultural associations, performance/exhibition venues, artist collectives and networks – stand now at a threshold. Whether or not they will strengthen and sustain their entrepreneurship are critical questions to ponder and necessitate some further serious research.

Index 1

Background information about the cases of entrepreneurship

İstanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts (İKSV) is a non-governmental organisation by the leadership of Dr. Nejat F. Eczacıbaşı, with the aim of organising an international arts festival in İstanbul. İKSV today along the realization of the most accomplished festivals in the country (Music,Jazz,Film,Theatre and the Biennial) and abroad and the upcoming new ones as the Design Biennial, has launched its own performance venue, in its new headquarters. (www.iksv.org)

Anadolu Kültür A.Ş is a civil initiative, committed to fostering mutual understanding through arts and culture, and has been working as an NGO on the sharing of culture and artistic production, focused on community development, participation, and a multi-stakeholder approach since 2002. (www.anadolukultur.org).

İstanbul Modern defines itself as the first private museum to organize modern and contemporary art exhibitions in Turkey.(www.istanbulmodern.org). The Museum offers a wide array of services in a multifaceted venue, including permanent and temporary exhibition galleries, photography gallery, library, cinema center, café and a design store offering also video, educational and social programs.

ÇGSG (Association of the Contemporary Performing Arts Initiative) is a non-profit, civil initiative that brings together independent artists, theoreticians, instructors, cultural operators and academicians working in the field of contemporary performance so as to trigger a general and comprehensive process of change and transformation in the area of performing arts in Turkey.” (www.cgsg-tr.org)

BAS is is an artist -run space initiated by Banu Cennetoğlu, which collects and produces artists’ books and printed matters. BAS, while willing to create awareness with its growing international artists’ books collection aims as well to generate a new platform for Turkish artists to explore printed matter as an alternative space. (www.b-a-s.info)

BIS Body Process Arts Association is an Istanbul based initiative that aims to explore artistic forms of expression at the conjunction of the body and the digital process to create a local discussion and production platform on art and technology. (www.amberplatform.org)

garajistanbul is an international, non-profit, contemporary performing arts organization who owns a venue in Istanbul, Beyoglu; makes productions and publishes a magazine called “gist”. (www.garajistanbul.org)

ARTER – Space for Art initiated by the Vehbi Koç Foundation, is conceived as an exhibition space and its programmes are created with the aim of encouraging production of contemporary artworks, providing a platform of visibility for artistic practices, producing and presenting exhibitions curated from the VKF Contemporary Art Collection, as well as from private collections and archives. (www.arter.org.tr)

SALT Beyoğlu is actually re-structured fusion of the three previous establishments of arts and culture of the Garanti Bank – Ottoman Bank Archives and Research Centre and Museum, Platform Garanti Contemporary Art Centre and Garanti Gallery- under the auspices of Garanti Kültür A.Ş. (www.saltonline.org)


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[1] http://www.labforculture.org/en/directory/contents/region-in-focus/turkey/istanbul-s-cultural-constellation-and-its-european-prospects-by-dragan-klaic (Online, 20.04.2011)

[2] Seçkin, A. 2009. “The Economic politics of Cultural Policies in Turkey,” in Türkiye’de Kültür Politikalarına Giriş, S. Ada and H. A. İnce, eds.,Istanbul: Istanbul Bilgi Yayınları, p. 111-127.

[3] http://anibellek.org/en/?p=488 (Online, 20.04.2011)

[4] Karaca, B. Forthcoming “Europeanization from the Margins? Istanbul’s Cultural Capital Initiative and the Formation of European Cultural Policies.” In: Creating a Common Cultural Past and Present? The EU, its Cultural Capitals, and the Effects of Europeanization. Edited by Kiran Klaus Patel.

[5] Bill on Istanbul 2010 European Capital of Culture No. 5706 dated 2.11.2007, Clause 11a.

[6]http://www.radikal.com.tr/Radikal.aspx?aType=RadikalYazar&ArticleID=1010025&Yazar=CEM%20ERC%DDYES&Date=26.07.2010&CategoryID=113 (Online, 18.04.2011)

[7] DiMaggio, P. J.1986. “Cultural Entrepreneurship in Nineteenth Century Boston,” in Non-Profit Enterprise in the Arts: Studies in Mission and Constraint, Paul J Dimaggio, New York: Oxford University Press, p. 41 – 61.

[8] As Turkey will be the 29th member state to take part in a Council of Europe Cultural Policy Report, an Alternative Report for Cultural Policy in Turkey is initiated by AK and BILGI together with a number of leading NGOs inorder to include the contribution of civil society to the national report and that of independent experts.

[9] The “Monument to Humanity” that was erected by the Turkish Sculptor Mehmet Aksoy as a commissioned work in 2006 in Kars close to the Armenian border is being demolished with an order from the Prime Minister Erdoğan who called the  30-meter unfinished concrete statue, “freakish”.

[10] http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/n.php?n=culture-minister-makes-u-turn-amid-oppositional-reactions-2011-04-15 (Online, 18.04.2011)

[11] Aysun, E.A. 2010. “Leaps of Contemporary Art in the New Era and the Case of A77.” Cultural Policy and Management (KPY) Yearbook 2010, 2010, p.156-169.

[12] Ünsal, D. How to Talk about the Cultural Sector in Turkey. Electronic Document, 2006.

http://labforculture.org/pl/content/download/6205/88611/file/Cultural%20sector%20in%20Turkey%20Deniz%20Unsal.pdf (Online, 20.04.2011)

[13] http://www.irs.gov/charities/charitable/article/0,,id=96099,00.html (Online, 20.04.2011)

[14]http://labforculture.org/pl/content/download/6205/88611/file/Cultural%20sector%20in%20Turkey%20Deniz%20Unsal.pdf (Online, 20.04.2011)

[15]http://www.dernekler.gov.tr/index.php?option=com_content&view=category&layout=blog&id=52&Itemid=12&lang=tr (Online, 21.04.2011)

[16] http://www.tusev.org.tr/userfiles/image/Monitorin%20Project_executive%20summary.pdf (Online, 20.04.2011)

[17] ibid.

[18] Interview with Osman Kavala, Founder and Director of the Board and Zümray Kutlu, Programs Manager, Anadolu Kültür, 18.04.2011.

[19] Interview with Melih Fereli, VKF Advisor on Arts and Culture, ARTER, 13.04.2011

[20] The only appearant grant giving foundations with open calls are stated to be that of Sabancı and Vodafone Foundations.

[21] Interview with Melih Fereli, VKF Advisor on Arts and Culture, ARTER, 13.04.2011

[22] Interview with İKSV, Görgün Taner ,Executive Director, 12.04.2011 and interview with İstanbul Modern, Levent Çalıkoğlu, Chief Curator, 12.04.2011.

[23] Borusan Holding for the International Istanbul Music Festival and Koç Holding for the International Istanbul Biennial  both are the announced sponsors for 10 years.

[24] Interview with Görgün Taner, Director of IKSV, 08.04.2011.

[25] Interview with ÇGSG old and new board members Şule Ateş, Zeynep Günsur, Eylem Ertürk and Pelin Başaran, 09.04.2011.

[26] ibid

[27] Interview with Banu Cennetoğlu, Founding Director, BAS, 08.04.2011.

[28] Interview with Özlem Alkış and Ekmel Ertan, the Founding Members, BIS, 09.04.2011.

[29] Interview with Banu Cennetoğlu, Founding Director, BAS, 08.04.2011.

[30] Interview with Övül and Mustafa Avkıran ,Founding Directors, garajistanbul, 08.04.2011

[31]http://www.todayszaman.com/newsDetail_getNewsById.action;jsessionid=326E5F24E9F53069CA9F57B60945D591?newsId=240445. (Online, 18.04.2010)

[32] http://web.hurriyetdailynews.com/mob_n.php?n=salt-is-innovation-and-alteration-2011-04-08 and  http://www.artfacts.net/en/institution/salt-beyoaulu-24953/overview.html (Online, 18.04.2010)

[33] http://blog.art21.org/2011/02/11/turkish-and-other-delights-an-interview-with-vasif-kortun-part-ii/ (Online, 18.04.2010)

[34] Dervişoğlu G., Aysun, E.A. Being “Cultural Entrepreneur” in Istanbul, Artist or Manager?, Conference Paper, ICCPR 2008.

[35] Atatürk Culture Centers, State Opera and Ballet, State Theatres, State Symphony, State Museums, State Galleries, Theatres, Galleries and Cultural Centers of the Municipalities.

[36] The budget share of Ministry of Culture and Tourism from that of 2006 is recorded to be of only ‘0.004‘.

[37] Official Gazette, No: 22347 dated 18.07.1995

[38] Official Gazette, No: 26463 dated 15.03.2007

[39] Offical Gazette, No: 25401 dated 13.03.2004

[40] http://www.istanbulmodern.org/en/f_index.html (Online, 18.04.2010)

[41] Interview with Levent Çalıkoğlu, Chief Curator of Istanbul Modern, 08.04.2011

[42] Karaca, Banu. Forthcoming “Europeanization from the Margins? Istanbul’s Cultural Capital Initiative and the Formation of European Cultural Policies.” In: Creating a Common Cultural Past and Present? The EU, its Cultural Capitals, and the Effects of Europeanization. Edited by Kiran Klaus Patel.

[43] http://anibellek.org/en/?p=488 (Online, 18.04.2010)

[44] Ibid.

[45] European Capitals Of Culture From The Past To The Future, Publications of The Mimar Sinan University of Fine Arts, 2007.

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