Iconic movie theater Alkazar reopens

Iconic movie theater Alkazar reopens

Iconic movie theater Alkazar reopens

The Alkazar Movie Theater, one of Beyoğlu’s symbolic venues, has reopened its doors with the new name “Hope Alkazar” on the last day of the Beyoğlu Culture Road Festival.

Speaking about the Alkazar Movie Theater and its 100-year-old history at the opening ceremony, Culture and Tourism Deputy Minister Ahmet Misbah Demircan said a very beautiful structure emerged after the restoration.

Stating that the building was opened with digital artwork, Demircan said: “Alkazar made a good start with Refik Anadol, of whom we are proud. Technology put a new perspective into the old one but with a completely different understanding. The exhibition here displays frames from 150 films that were screened in Alkazar since the 1940s until it was closed. Beneath those frames, he brought our feelings, our culture and the beauties of our cinema together with digital art for everyone to enjoy.”

Demircan defined the Hope Alkazar building as “art within art,” saying, “It not only draws attention to our cinema culture but also offers millions of frames to us with such a clever method. This is exactly what we call ‘a future rooted in the past.’ Culture and arts are something like this. Culture is the past that makes us who we are, while arts is to produce new thoughts and new approaches.”

Speaking to the state-run Anadolu Agency, famous artist Anadol, whose interactive installation titled “Alcazar’s Dream” is exhibited in the building, said that he prepared his work with the contributions of Nike Turkey.

“Representing the historical memory of the Alkazar Movie Theater, nearly 150 films played in this theater between 1947 and 2010 are reunited with the audience in 3D thanks to artificial intelligence [AI]. In fact, this is the first time in the world that such a large amount of data turned into a performance by passing through AI. We can also think of it as a kind of AI restoration of this structure, which is very important for Turkish cinema and has a very valuable place in collective memory.”

Stating that the work consists of two parts, Anadol said: “In the first part, each movie is understood by reading one by one from AI networks, and then the AI has a dream. In the second part, it understands the movement, direction and speed of the viewer and transforms the viewer into a pigment with light. The fact that this building is open to everyone, that it is a work of art in the social arena and that such a work is made for the first time in Turkey and the world, makes me very excited. Ten years ago, I made the first data sculpture in the world and Turkey again on İstiklal Street in Beyoğlu. I am very happy and proud to have brought such a new idea back to life in the same place after 10 years.”

Hope Alkazar, which also focuses on the purpose of social favor, opened with the theme of “The Stage of the Movement.”

In the structure, Nike athletes will organize workshops that will inspire the athletes of the future.