Sandra Schaefer with Ayşe Çavdar:
At the end of the 1990s, a new suburb called Başakşehir sprang up far from the city center in Istanbul. With the planned construction of another international airport and a second Bosphorus canal, the area is emerging as a new, future city center. Originally earmarked as a public housing project, countless gated community complexes have been erected that are now home to a largely neoliberal conservative middle class. With its 370,000 inhabitants, Başakşehir is emblematic of a more comprehensive process of transformation; a physical and social restructuring of the city. Urban space here constitutes both symbolic and social space, and is permeated by capitalist interests. State and city act as a private company.The exhibition Başakşehir: An Urban Model traces the layers and contradictions of the unfolding urban transformation. The installation presents the model project Başakşehir as a series of spatial narratives, interwoven with the perspectives of residents and workers from the area, as well as from the nearby Ikitelli industrial zone. The informal Şahintepe settlement, while located within the district of Başakşehir, is not a part of the “new town” and is set to give way for housing development.Başakşehir is divided into numerous urban islands. The installation responds to this fragmentation and approaches the varied urban spaces through three different projections and four wallpapers.
4 channel video installation, HD,
17’, 21’, 10’, 15’, wallpaper
Chipboard, steel profiles
This project is supported by Cultural Affairs of Berlin Senate.