Çelenk Bafra

Çelenk Bafra is a curator and the director of the SAHA – Supporting Contemporary Art from Turkey and the SAHA Studio between 2018 and 2024. From 2011 to the end of 2017, she was the curator and the director of exhibitions and programs at Istanbul Modern. Between 2001 and 2010, she worked at Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts (IKSV) and assumed various roles, such as the director of the Istanbul Biennial, the artistic coordinator of Saison de la Turquie in France, the founding director of the Studio of Turkey at Cité des Arts in Paris and the advisor of the Pavilion of Turkey in the Venice Biennale. Bafra curated exhibitions and programs in museums and art institutions in Denmark, Germany, France, Italy, the Netherlands and the UK. She writes reviews for publications and periodicals and produces and presents a weekly podcast “Hariçten Sanat” [Art from the Exterior] broadcast on Mondays on Açık Radyo. She is a member of CIMAM and AICA Turkey; and was appointed by the French Ministry of Culture a member of the board of directors of MUCEM in Marseille until 2016. As a curator, she focuses on group exhibitions based on research and production: “School Square Galatasaray” (2018), “An Exile on Earth” (2018-2019), “Harbor” (2017), “TILL IT’S GONE” (2015-2016), “Plurivocality” (2014), “Neighbours” (2014), “Modernity?” (2013), “La La La Human Steps & Istanbul Modern Rotterdam” (2012), “Uncanny Encounters” (2011), “Ahmet Cevdet Bey Presents: Tunnel of Fear” (2011), “Fantasie et Ile” (2010), “Emploi Saisonnier” (2009-2010), “60 Ans 60 Vidéos” (2009) as well as international programs such as YAP: Young Architects Program, Artists’ Film International and Museums Talk series (From the USA, UK, Germany) at Istanbul Modern until 2018.


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