Detailed Exhibit Boards

The only ones I have not included are the introduction boards, because they had so much pinned up on top of them, they would have been kind of boring to see on their own.

Istanbul History Board

click the link to get the full quality PDF—>>>istanbul_DNA_mockup


again, click here —>>>istanbul_timeline_mockup

Transverse Sections and on-site drawings

you know the drill–>>>transverse_mockup2

Looking to the Future

and again—>>>fener_issues2_mockup

Michelle’s Boards have been removed because she cannot distribute many of her photos, they come from protected archives!  Sorry about that!


Exhibition Photos

Here is a photograph explaining the layout of the gallery exhibit.  Detailed images of each board to follow.  Apologies on the delay!

*** NOTE *** this blog will be switching gears– again, as I continue to progress through my thesis writing.  Look for a slightly different header and some progress uploads as I begin further mapping, developing a site plan, and moving toward a building.  More on that as I begin catching back up.

click here for the full quality PDF —->  gallery collage

Text from the poster


just in case you didn’t want to scroll through a huge pdf.


Cities are complex portraits of the social and psychological collective lives of their inhabitants.  Through an aggregate series of events, they indelibly leave their mark on the city fabric.  Uncovering and exploring these processes is the first step in design research.  Istanbul, Turkey, is uniquely situated as a case study because it has a position of being one of the world’s mega-cities (an increasing phenomenon, and one likely to continue in years to come), strategically situated at the edge of a volatile region of the world, and straddling the eastern and western cultures with a long, rich history.  Istanbul is a palimpsest of geographical and topological preconditions overlaid with multiple layers of history and urban culture, and as a contemporary metropolis facing transportation and infrastructural issues at a large scale.


By first developing a framework for studying Istanbul as a whole, and then applying that framework to the neighborhood of Fener, connections between political, technological, and social movements and their impact on the built environment can be revealed.  Istanbul can be described by Colin Rowe’s Collage City, containing many layers of inhabitation; it is simultaneously categorized by Hugh Kennedy’s polis and madina.  By experiencing the city through literature, such as Orhan Pamuk’s, or by reconstructing it in the manner of Italo Calvino’s Invisible Cities, we begin to realize a city that manifests on a number of different levels.  In looking critically at the city’s history we realize that its identity is created through both invention and representation.


Applying these lessons to Fener, we learn that the neighborhood is embroiled in identity politics, spending many years as the capital of the Greek Orthodoxy and a center for the Ottoman Empire’s Greek minority, it is now the home to other, poorer immigrants from the Black Sea regions.  The waterfront, which had previously been a productive landscape, bringing both industry and trade to the area, was converted after modernization into a sanitized and denuded park, which was part of a clean up effort in the 1980s.  Not only was the industrial history of the neighborhood and the city erased, but no image was offered to replace it; silencing the minority voices of the former Greek inhabitants and preventing its new inhabitants from effectively taking ownership in the area.


Through mapping and diagramming, the relationship of the neighborhood to the water has been explored, as well as the relationship between visibility and topography.  As in the rest of the city, important sites are located at high elevations, and minority ones are hidden behind walls or pushed into the slope.  For example, the placement of the Bulgarian Church on the waterfront can be interpreted as the late Ottoman Empire’s attempt to embrace industrialization, through the importation of a precast iron church from Vienna, not necessarily an endorsement of the minority religion.


However, at this time, the neighborhood is lacking an identity, and is under threat by the municipality, who is proposing to demolish and redevelop the area.  The faceless waterfront of Fener represents the perfect opportunity to re-establish the identity and visibility of its inhabitants, presenting the neighborhood as a vibrant cultural and economic center.



a re-imagining of the concept of the park, with the goal of making it more productive

Using mythology and archaeology to re-imagine the uses [i.e., the legend of Istanbullus fishing in their basements]

Allowing the industrial nature of the waterfront to inform a design

To allow the spanning of the highway, which alienates the residents from the water

To educate about the history of the neighborhood and its inhabitants

To build a cultural center for the presentation of this knowledge.

Poster for Design Research Project

Here is the final poster for the semester– a massive condensation of all the work into a single format.  Here, I am trying to identify the specific issues that I see with Fener and beginning to propose possible design solutions.  I think so far the biggest conclusion I have made is that the park needs to be re-thought, especially in relationship to the highway bordering the neighborhood.  In the fall semester, I intend to continue this project by developing an urban strategy for the park, and a building located somewhere in the green space.  Possible ideas for program include– agri/aquaculture, a center for market and exchange, a museum showcasing minority groups and their impact on Istanbul, and some system for managing infrastructure, especially water runoff.

Here is a jepg of the poster, more detailed images will be attached in a later post.

To download the full scale pdf, click here—> designresearchposter3