The historical Mongeri House in Şişli, which is an important example of early Republican civil architecture and currently home to the Bozlu Art Project’s artistic events, shall host the “Memory Palaces” exhibit curated by Dr. Özlem İnay Erten from April 20th to August 28th. Named after the “Memory Palace” technique used ever since the time of Ancient Greek and Roman civilizations in order to visually recall information through spatial environments, the exhibit invites viewers to contemplate the life stories of Italian-born architect “Giulio Mongeri” and the “Mongeri House”, pondering the nature of the relationship between space and memory. In it, the artworks of Meliha Sözeri, Server Demirtaş and Evren Erol are assembled together around the concept of a “Memory Palace”.


The “Memory Palaces” exhibit starts out with Dr. Luigi Mongeri (1815-1882), an imperial doctor in the court of Sultan Abdulmacid (1839-1861) who played a major role in institutionalizing modern psychiatry in Turkey, in order to unearth his son’s life story from Istanbul to Italy – namely, architect Giulio Mongeri (1873-1951), who left his mark on our architectural history, as well as the transitions undergone over time by the Mongeri House originally built for the Sadıkoğlu Family in the early years of the Republic, to then become the “Pakize Tarzi Clinic”, “Ataman Clinic”, and “Yüzyıl Işıl Primary School”.


Curator Dr. Özlem İnay Erten explains that their aim in preparing this exhibit was to shed light on Giulio Mongeri’s life and the history of the Mongeri House with archival information and documents, therefore attempting to approach the notion of a “Memory Palace” –  the exhibition’s main concept – from the perspective of contemporary artistic practices through Meliha Sözeri, Server Demirtaş and Evren Erol’s artwork. Underlining the fact that audiences were in for an unusual exhibition, Erten highlights the variety of meanings the notion of the “home” has taken on in light of the pandemic, summarizing her thoughts on the exhibition’s set-up in the following words: Approaching memory-laden monumental works of architecture in light of clues as to the workings of collective memory, with questions such as “Do the life stories of places resemble those of people? At what point do the memories of places overlap with the places in our memories?”, this exhibition will allow its visitors to trace this thinking in contemporary artistic practices.


As images hinting at what has been experienced, the photographs, documents and artworks in the exhibit invite art-lovers to contemplate Turkey’s political, social and cultural transformations. Featuring artworks by Meliha Sözeri, Server Demirtaş and Evren Erol, the exhibition will be on view at the Bozlu Art Project Mongeri Building from April 20th to August 28th.


Within Covid- 19 precautions;

  • There will be no opening cocktail.
  • It is necessary to wear mask and maintain the social distance determined by the Ministry of Health during visits.
  • Up to 5 people can enter the building at the same time.
  • The exhibition can be visited between 10.00 – 17.30.

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