Maçka Sanat Galerisi (MSG) was founded in 1976 by sisters, Varlık Sadıkoğlu and Rabia Çapa in İstanbul. They believed that contemporary art must be presented within a contemporary space.
The architectural design of the gallery was designed by architect Mehmet Konuralp, special lightning design by Prof. Şazi Sirel and the graphic design was made by the graphic designer Mengü Ertel. The walls and the floor of the gallery space is covered with ivory ceramic tiles and it breaks the traditional norms of “white cube” becoming an experimental space.
MSG started its journey in 1976 by exhibiting paintings in the first room and Anatolian Traditional Art in the second room. In 1980’s, recognizing the need, started welcoming artists with different artistic approaches.
In the 1980’s MSG organized two important exhibitions; in 1984, Adnan Çoker prepared a group exhibition with 3 topics: Abstract Art, New figurative Painting and Conceptual Art. The other was the solo show of Sarkis, “Çaylak Sokak”in 1986. It was the first time in Turkey for an exhibition to meet the audience under the topic of “Conceptual art”.
In the following years, MSG changed its vision and started supporting conceptual art. On the contrary of other private galleries in İstanbul, MSG, rather than making profit, had a mission of finding itself a unique place in the contemporary Turkish art scene by becoming an institution where art was thought and discussed.
Maçka Sanat Galerisi was not only a gallery but a meeting point for artists, poets, writers, critics, architects and for anyone interested in art. These meetings, artist talks and discussions had an inspirational effect on young artists over the years.
In 1990’s became one of the few gallery spaces in İstanbul to show both paintings and installations of Turkish and international artists such as Daniel Buren and François Morellet. In the same years, artists started confronting the architectural and historical identity of the gallery.
Füsun Onur, Ayşe Erkmen and Sarkis were some of the artists to deal with this special space and to produce site-specific works. MSG started publishing the catalogues of these exhibitions to document the new approach of contemporary art production.
In 2011, MSG celebrated the 35th anniversary with a series of shows and events curated by Nazlı Gürlek. The selected young artists were; Bengü Karaduman, Burak Arıkan, Volkan Aslan, Alp Klanten, Elmas Deniz and İz Öztat.
MSG has been bringing together art with the viewer for 37 years despite its distinct approach in the art scene of İstanbul. Has generated a rich archive of the Contemporary Turkish Art and has witnessed it from a unique point.
MSG has opened 149 solo shows and 31 group exhibitions until today and it’s still directed by the founder Rabia Çapa.
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