The Muse of the Museum: An Allegoric Story of a Non Existent Photography Museum in Turkey

Ebru Surek
Sabanci University, Turkey

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Ingår i: Current Issues in European Cultural Studies; June 15-17; Norrköping; Sweden 2011

Linköping Electronic Conference Proceedings 62:20, s. 183-188

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Publicerad: 2011-11-22

ISBN: 978-91-7519-993-1

ISSN: 1650-3686 (tryckt), 1650-3740 (online)


Purpose of this paper is to uncover the layers of a non-existent photography museum. Museums offer material conditions of existence and indications that constitute a sound basis of culture. Therefore studying the existence of museums can tell us a lot about the cultural state of a society. As a photography student studying visual arts in Turkey; I have developed a keen interest on how art and photography is appreciated in Turkish society. This interest urged me to compare the worldwide museum practices. This comparison led me to a conclusion that the history of Turkish museums was far more ephemeral than the world famous ones; the purpose of their existence was to form a cultural and historical unity among its citizens. Therefore they were mostly regarded as collectors of archives and the importance of artistic appreciation always had a secondary place. Photography has also taken its share from this approach and always been treated as a witness to history rather than an art form. Therefore no priority was given to a photography museum for decades and Turkey is still in need of one.


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