The Hippodrome in Memory

Archaeological ruins, engravings, miniatures... Our destination, Pera Museum. The subject, the Hippodrome in memory.

It is inconceivable to come to Istanbul and not visit the Blue Mosque. Or to visit the Blue Mosque and not have a look at the three monuments on the Hippodrome that have survived to our day - the Egyptian Obelisk, the Walled Obelisk and the Serpentine Column. But how many people can conjure up in their mind’s eye the magnitude and splendor of the Hippodrome and its centuries-old history? Not many. If you want to be one of them, then see the exhibition, ‘The Hippodrome/Atmeydanı: Istanbul’s Historical Stage’, on the third floor of the Suna ve İnan Kıraç Pera Museum. The exhibition, which virtually recreates the Byzantine Hippodrome and Ottoman ‘Atmeydanı’, also chronicles the events that occurred here through a host of artifacts ranging from ivory tablets and rings with precious stones to plumed turban ornaments, bejeweled belts and elaborately carved wooden lecterns. If you want to see the chariot races so popular with the Byzantine emperors juxtaposed with the festivals of the Ottoman sultans, there’s still time. Through April 18.

  ‘Picasso - The Suite Vollard Engravings’ is another exhibition running at the Pera Museum through April 18, featuring the entire set of 100 prints made to special order between 1930 and 1937 by the great master of 20th century art, Pablo Picasso, for art dealer and publisher Ambroise Vollard...