Turkey’s love affair with the art world continues with the opening of two new contemporary art museums: Kengo Kuma’s striking Odunpazari Modern Museum (OMM) and modern art space Arter. A gleaming new building in Istanbul’s Dolapdere district is the new home of the latter, a dynamic venue created for the celebration and production of art by the philanthropic Vehbi Koç Foundation. Designed by London’s Grimshaw Architects, the gallery’s six floors are home to exhibitions showcasing works from the foundation’s private collection, as well as showcases and retrospectives dedicated to the country’s leading talent.
Two dynamic performance halls provide space for film screenings, chamber concerts, performance art and large-scale digital installations; and there’s a library, sculpture terrace, bookshop and café on site.
Meanwhile in Anatolia, superstar architect Kengo Kuma has put the finishing touches to OMM, home to a 1,000-piece collection of modern and contemporary art in the university town of Eskisehir. Fresh from his work on the V&A Dundee, Kuma has created a modern building of stacked timber, with asymmetrical modules designed to reflect the character of the traditional Odunpazari neighbourhood. Inaugural exhibitions include the largest-ever work by Japanese master bamboo artist Tanabe Chikuunsai IV and two environmentally-minded installations by British digital art collective Marshmallow Laser Feast.
There’s no need to worry about missing the train back to Istanbul: the adjacent OMM INN has 12 boutique rooms fitted out in a modern, minimalist style, with dining options including a vegetarian restaurant and modern street food stalls.