Istanbul’s interesting art museums

Istanbul has world class art galleries and art museums. Here are a few of them…


Founded in 2001, Sabancı Museum is Turkey’s first big-budget private museum. The museum is located in the Atli Kosk in Emirgan district and has exhibited works by artists such as Picasso, Rodin, Rembrandt, Anish Kapoor, Sophie Calle and Monet so far. The museum has its own collection of classical works, including calligraphy, paintings and furniture.

Sakip Sabanci Museum, Istanbul


Opened in 2004 as Turkey’s first modern art museum. Located in an old warehouse in Tophane district, the museum welcomes the work of many contemporary artists throughout the year. Its collection mainly consists of paintings and photographs, contains works of important artists such as Ali Kazma, Kutlug Ataman and Burhan Dogançay.

Istanbul Modern


Opened in 2011, SALT collects Garanti Bank’s all culture and art platforms under single roof in two separate buildings in Istanbul. Galata building is home for Ottoman Imperial Bank’s collection while Beyoglu building exhibits contemporary art works.


Arter, financed by the Vehbi Koc Foundation, has been hosting art lovers since 2010 in Beyoglu Istiklal Boulevard. The gallery, which brings together contemporary politically-based artists, has exhibited works of many famous artists including Patricia Piccinini and Mona Hatoum.


Pera Museum, owned by Suna & Inan Kırac Foundation, has hosted many important exhibitions since 2005. Located in the historic Bristol Hotel in Tepebasi district, the museum exhibits works by famous artists such as Frida Kahlo, Picasso, Diego Rivera and Goya. The museum, which mainly organizes classical exhibitions, exhibits periodical archaeological exhibitions as well. “Turtle Tracer” of Osman Hamdi Bey, who is regarded as the cornerstone of Turkish painting, is among the pieces of Pera’s collection.

Pera Museum, Istanbul


This museum has one of Turkey’s richest collections. Located at Ibrahim Pasha Palace, the museum’s collection has Seljuk carpets and “Holbein Carpets” from 15th to 17th centuries.


At Borusan Contemporary in Perili Kosk in Rumelihisari district, the works of media artists who use time, light, technology, video, software and similar tools are exhibited. The building is used as an office during the week and opens for visitors on weekends.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *