‘Eye of Istanbul’ lives on in archive of foundation
ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News
Ara güler has attended the opening ceremony of the Ara Güler Photography Education and Art Foundation at the Palais de France. The foundation will protect the archive of Güler and contribute to projects to develop photography in Turkey.
A new foundation in Istanbul is set to institutionalize the legacy of one of the most iconic figures in Turkish photography, Ara Güler, by preserving the master’s works in archival form for future generations.
The Ara Güler Photography Education and Art Foundation will protect the archive of Güler and contribute to projects to develop photography in Turkey.
“Historians write written history, whereas as we travel all around the world, we write visual history, which is the most valuable,” said Güler, adding that the foundation would assume an important role in bringing the works to the future.
Culture and Tourism Ministry Undersecretary Özgür Özaslan said Güler had brought the past to the present with his works. “It is the most important factor for an artist to share his experience of dozens of years with present and future generations.”
‘Artist of Anatolia’s geography’
Defining Güler as an artist of Anatolia’s geography, the undersecretary also said it was very important to be in the same vicinity with the photographer, adding that he would be one of the first volunteer members of the foundation if it opened an Ankara branch.
Discussing the reason for the establishment of the foundation, Güler said: “It hurts me that books are sold in second-hand booksellers. People used to read these books, learn from them. How can someone sell them by the kilogram? This is vandalism. I have been a photojournalist for 65 years, and one of the oldest members of the association. I have traveled almost everywhere in the world and have accumulated [a lot of work]. I don’t now have the right to destroy this accumulation; no one has this right.”
Yaşar Kemal, an iconic figure in Turkish literature, as well as İlber Ortaylı, a prominent historian, journalist Doğan Hızlan and several celebrities of the art world attended the reception that started with the showing of a documentary prepared by Nebil Özgentürk.
The Ara Güler Photography Education and Art Foundation’s board of trustees consists of Güler, Antoni Melkonyan, Umut Sülün, Jaklin Köse, Oskar Fuchs, Yücel Doğruer, Yaşar Kartoğlu and Fatih Aslan.
The foundation will work with associations and legal institutions to bring photojournalism to a wider audience and prevent its misuse and corruption. The foundation will also support successful photojournalists and give awards in different competitions. It will hold courses and workshops to popularize and develop visual journalism while also supporting research in the field.