Publishers, book enthusiasts flock to Istanbul Book Fair
ISTANBUL – Anadolu AgencyTurkey’s biggest international book fair opened its doors this weekend with a ceremony to mark its 34th anniversary.
The TUYAP Fair in Beylikdüzü opened on Nov. 7 with the theme of “Humor: Looking at Life with a Smile.”
Romania is the honorary guest of the event, which will host prominent Romanian writers such as Mircea Cartarescu and Matei Visniec.
Speaking at the opening ceremony of the fair, Governor Vasip Sahin said, “Today, reading a book is no longer seen as a leisure activity; rather it has started to be taken as an obligation, need and duty.”
Şahin said reading and art are considered developmental not only for individuals but also for society.
He added that last year about 500,000 people visited the fair.
Matei Ioan, general director of Libraries and Publications at Romania’s culture ministry, said, “I believe that written culture constitutes a whole purification system of the soul in these geopolitical conditions.”
The Turkish Publishers’ Association head, Metin Celal, said, “Last year, we produced 561,000 books. According to the International Publishers’ Association, we are the world’s 11th largest publishing sector.”
Meanwhile, publications of journalism and photographs by Anadolu Agency are also on show.
Tan Oral, illustrator of honor
On the second day of the fair, the illustrator of honor of this year’s festival, Tan Oral, made a speech and presented his illustrations to the audience.
Among the other guests of the fair, journalist and writer Sarah Jio, who is best known for her romantic novels (her last book being “The Book of Love”), has published in 27 countries including Turkey. Jio will meet her Turkish readers at the fair as a guest of Pena Publications.
The fair will also host international guests like Vassilis Papatheodorou, Yannis Kalpouzos and Manuel Vilas.
The Istanbul Book Fair also prepared a program to commemorate the 100th birthday of Aziz Nesin. The program will include interviews and panels on the author’s life, work and literary significance. An exhibition, entitled “A Man Larger than Life: Aziz Nesin 1915-2015,” will be open throughout the fair to educate viewers on the literature, humor, world view, political stance and legacy of Nesin.
The 34th International Istanbul Book Fair will continue through Nov. 17.