Istanbul is well-known with its silhouette of mosques and the Hagia Sophia. But in reality the historical part of Istanbul counts only 14 square km in approx. 5350 square km in the whole metropolitan area. The city is kind of exploding and the population has risen in the last 60 years more than 15 times. Trying to meet the necessities and interests of the population as well as of the global world is a great challenge to the city, planners and architects. Observing the development of Istanbul together with its rich historical heritage is a great excitement. But not only architecture and urban development, the art and design scene of Istanbul has developed tremendously and became internationally emancipated.
We are a team of four. Zeynep Kuban and Bilge Ar are academics in history of architecture; Alper Kurbak and Cem Erözü are practicing architects. We are a good mixture for guiding through the architecture of Istanbul.
Zeynep Kuban (1964) trained as an Archaeologist and Art Historian and obtained her MA and PhD at ITU Istanbul in History of Architecture, where she is a professor in the same department. She has been guiding in Turkey and especially Istanbul since 1989 (licence from the ministry of Tourism and Culture). Her courses and interests are in the historical development, continuities and disruptions, of Istanbul as well as the notion of History (the presence and absence of it) in contemporary building activities.
Bilge Ar (1981) studied Architecture at ITU Istanbul where she also obtained her M.A. and PhD in History of Architecture. She is an assistant professor at ITU in the department of History of Architecture. Since her student times she has been active for EASA and ever since guiding architectural schools and architects.
Alper Kurbak (1984) has taken his degree as bachelor of architecture in Istanbul Technical University (ITU). He has been to Karlsruhe Institute of Technology as visiting scholar for a year and received his MSc degree in architectural design at ITU by his thesis ‘Airport Related Urbanizations’. Alper has been very active in EASA during his studies. He worked as academician for four years at Istanbul Maltepe University. He is a practicing architecture.
Cem Erözü (1963) studied Architecture at ITU and spent many years in Vienna working and studying, he worked as a teaching assistant at ITU Design department between 1993 and 2006. Cem is the senior partner in Erözü Mimarlık Office. He has guiding experience since 1989 (Professional Licence from the Ministry of Tourism and Culture) and is a musician as well.
We can show you the architecture of Istanbul from its first buildings to the present. Unlike classical tours we also care for the architectural production of more recent times. Therefore exploring Istanbul with GA-Istanbul would mean to understand the whole. Istanbul in tours of half, whole or several days, prepared according to your needs and wishes. A trip through Istanbul and its built environment can include many different topics, like housing, industrial zones and buildings, educational buildings, adaptive re-use of historical buildings, single and maybe tiny precious architectural projects squeezed into the city and their interiors as well as questions of art and design hidden in the craze of Istanbul.
Historical buildings are not restricted to the masterpiece of Hagia Sophia the impressive mosques of architect Sinan, the Topkapi Palace and the Grand Bazaar. There are many interesting old buildings in the hustle and bustle of Istanbul, that nobody would ever show you-BUT we do. And they live side by side with the present. Of course there are many topics that we cannot cover by ourselves BUT through our academia network and our personal contacts we can find the adequate experts for your interests and create the contacts. This city has a lot to offer that we can transmit in English, German and on request in other languages. We care for students. Contact us!!
READY TO GO!
If you do not want to think about all the possible options or you do not have a very certain aim, here you will find three different routes in which you can explore Istanbul from an architectural point of view. In variations of half and full day tours we give you insight into the contemporary building scene, show you the urban and architectural developments from the 1930’s to the present, as well as examples of restoration and adaptive reuse of historical buildings. They are all definitely only by foot to ensure the proposed time frame. They are NOT open tours, where you can sign up. Contact us.
In Pursuit of Modernity
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From Taksim to Beşiktaş
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