Sinan: The First Starchitect explores the life and work of Mimar Sinan, architect to the sultans of the Ottoman Empire
The AJ/Turkishceramics exhibition features research projects by Ian Ritchie Architects, Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners, Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios, DSDHA, Reiach and Hall Architects, Sam Jacob Studio and Bureau de Change.
Produced in association with Turkishceramics, and curated by former AJ editor Rory Olcayto, the exhibition opens at the Building Centre in London yesterday ( Thursday 19 May).
BradYendle Sinan 1
In November last year Turkishceramics and the AJ took the participating British architects to Istanbul and Edirne on a research trip to study the work of Sinan – the maestro behind the skyline of historic Istanbul.
The trip resulted in an 112pp-book and an extensive exhibition, which has been designed by AJ art director Brad Yendle. AJ subscribers can view the book here.
Sinan, a contemporary of Palladio and Michelangelo, was a former soldier in the Ottoman army who rose to become chief Architect to Sultan Suleyman. He defined the look and feel of historic Istanbul, with its skyline of domes and minarets, but is also renowned for his engineering skills, and the bridges and aqueducts he designed.
This is the first London exhibition dedicated to Sinan
This exhibition focuses on Sinan’s life and his mastery of the art of building, from his use of ceramics to his designs of mosque complexes and urban infrastructure. It also presents the research projects created by the six architectural practices.
Exhibition curator and Open House London director Rory Olcayto said: ‘This is the first time London has hosted an exhibition dedicated to the great Ottoman architect Mimar Sinan, whose work rivalled – and strongly influenced - that of his Italian Renaissance contemporaries. Wren, too, looked to Sinan when he designed St Paul’s.’
Olcayto said despite Sinan’s achievements in urban design, architecture and infrastructural engineering, the 16th-century ‘maestro’ remains a mystery to many British architects. He added: ’In this respect, our exhibition is a gateway into Sinan’s richly compelling world.’
Sinan: The First Starchitect runs until 10 June at the Building Centre, 26 Store Street, London WC1E 7BT. Entry is free
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