Neoliberalization that has swept across the world like a vast tidal wave since the early nineties affected the cultural production methods as well. Pioneered by western countries and spread through non-western countries as well Liberalization tendencies could only begin to take effect in Turkey by the demilitarization period after the military coup in September 1980. Formations of new art institutions particularly in İstanbul and the artists’ questioning of displaying spaces and status of an independent piece of art paved the way of art to pour into streets. The concept of relational aesthetics that was coined by French curator Bourriaud in the nineties stimulated the questionings about the audience’s passive state and led the growth of a new artistic approach focusing on relations between individuals in a world changing. This essay intends to examine artistic attempts in Istanbul to open out to the public space and the flux of these experiments in light of criticisms throughout the years, using various examples.
Key Words: Relational Aesthetics, Public Art, İstanbul