Istanbul Design Biennial goes to Belgium

Istanbul Design Biennial goes to Belgium

Istanbul Design Biennial goes to Belgium


Belgium’s Z33 House for Contemporary Art and C-mine will exhibit 100 projects developed for last year’s fourth Istanbul Design Biennial – an event that explores and tests possibilities in design education. 

The exhibit started in Istanbul for the design biennial Sept. 22 through Nov. 4, traveled to the Atelier Luma think tank and was part of the annual Guest Program of Luma Days No. 3 - forum of art and ideas, both in in Arles, France, in May. It is now on display at the two art venues in Belgium through Sept. 29.

Last year’s design biennial – titled “A School of Schools” - was inspired by the centennial this year of the Bauhaus, a famous German art school founded in 1919 in Weimar, Germany.

Sporting the motto, “design is learning, and learning is design,” the biennial focused on creating a space for learning in which established norms and conventions could be questioned.

The exhibition in Belgium is curated by Jan Boelen, artistic director of Z33 House for Contemporary Art.

“It would seem that design itself is changing, no longer simply about consumable products. The projects on display show snapshots in ongoing research into how we can renegotiate knowledge and power,” said Boelen. 

A creative hub in Genk, C-mine is a heritage building that was converted from a 20th century mining site into an incubator for creative industries in the 21st century.

The biennial installation, designed by architect Aslı Çiçek, a native Istanbulite who lives in Brussels, and product designer Lukas Wegwerth of Berlin; is interspersed throughout the C-mine building.

One of the six schools created under the theme of A School of Schools, the Time School exhibition at SALT Galata in the Istanbul district of Beyoğlu, curated by Ils Huygens (Z33); will be presented this autumn together with the opening of a new building for Z33.

The fourth Istanbul Design Biennial last fall brought together more than 200 interdisciplinary practitioners from 21 countries at six venues. Curated by Jan Boelen with Nadine Botha and Vera Sacchetti, the biennial attracted more than 200,000 people in six weeks. The biennial projects explored the multiple dimensions of design as learning in six schools: Unmaking School, Currents School, Scales School, Earth School, Time School and Digestion School. The biennial’s ambitious program of exhibitions, projects and events spanned the city of Istanbul.