Setenay Alpsoy, Evin Art Gallery,
Pencil on paper 40x41cm, 2022


This story begins with master painter Nuri İyem and his wife, ceramic artist Nasip İyem. Their daughter-in-law, Evin İyem, and son, Ümit İyem, are the heroes of the story because they opened Evin Art Gallery in 1996 to bring a fresh perspective to art galleries in Turkey. Guided by instincts honed by an artistic family, Evin and Ümit succeeded in introducing a different approach that focuses on nurturing the artist. More recently, as the third-generation creatives of the family, Osman Nuri İyem and Gizem Kâhya İyem remain loyal to the gallery’s work ethic, but they have also given it a modern identity more in tune with the zeitgeist. It has been located at Büyük Bebek Deresi Sokak No. 13 in Istanbul since 2003 and this is what art enthusiasts can expect to find there 20 years on.


This is your chance to experience art in a historical mansion in Bebek, one of the city’s most beautiful neighbourhoods…

You can start your visit in the project area where up-and-coming and established artists have the opportunity to showcase original ideas and private projects. Here, you can see Setenay Alpsoy’s “Gayrettepe Last Stop”, which was featured in “Trinity Buoy Wharf Drawing” award-winning 2020 exhibition that toured various cities across the UK. You can take a mental trip through the black-and-white photographs of New York-based artist Devin Oktar Yalkın, and disappear into the sculptures of Rahmi Aksungur before spending time in the İyem Library, which contains rare and signed art books from the family collection. If digital art is your passion, visit the NFT exhibition area to discover young digital artists and learn about the hot topic of the NFT.

It is worth visiting the gallery store before you leave. The store offers a wide selection of editions, works of art, and exclusive designer collections that make excellent gifts.

*Photography by Osman Nuri İyem
**Photography by Gizem Kâhya İyem

Gizem was a reserved child but she gravitated toward art early on. It is a passion that has followed her through life. She started taking ballet lessons at the age of five. The musical training she received there in the dance studio fascinated her so much that she started violin lessons at the age of 10. Music helped Gizem learn to exist and communicate through art. She went on to study art and design at Sabancı University in its visual arts and communication department. As an art director in movies, she dreamt of recreating entire worlds. And then she joined the Evin Art Gallery family. While working on the gallery’s creative projects and exhibition productions, she continued as an art director for films and music videos and appeared in group exhibitions as part of the Taşeron Independent Art Initiative.

Creating work across a variety of artistic disciplines allows Gizem to explore diverse visual languages and aesthetics while working in a gallery environment. According to Gizem, art is a product of the courage it takes to create. Like the decisions made during the creation of a work of art, the gallery’s artistic choices feel harmonious to Gizem, who is guided by artistic instincts while trying to maintain this affinity.

Osman comes from an artistic family. His grandparents were artists, his mother a gallery owner and his father an art fair director and a ceramicist. Art is in his genes. As a child, Osman often spent time at his grandmother’s workshop, where he played with ceramics instead of toys. His first camera was a gift from his grandmother. During his high school years, he watched a lot of movies and listened to music constantly. He studied cinema at university but claims that he enjoys the shaping of materials that is often a part of photography and other mediums, as much as the storytelling. Osman developed an interest in the dark side of the world; a period in which he focused on (literally) dark images and (metaphorically) dark relationships. His Master’s thesis on the fabrication of reality and the role of art had a profound impact on his artistic output. In his films, he wants the audience to feel his presence behind the camera. The manipulations that occur in his photography are evident and he encourages his audience to think about why.

The traces of Osman’s versatile artistic personality are also reflected in the operation of the gallery. He can easily connect and empathise with artists. His aesthetic perspective contributes significantly to how exhibitions are presented and narrated, the nature of collaborations with artists, and how artists’ dilemmas are resolved.


Kader Genç (b. 1987, Bursa) graduated from Mimar Sinan University of Fine Arts with a degree in painting. These are his thoughts on the Evin Art Gallery, which has represented him since 2022.

"Evin Art has been on my radar since my time as a student, so it goes without saying, I feel honored to be represented by them. I am in close contact with the team at the gallery and this has helped establish a strong artist-gallery relationship in a very short time. The level of communication is great and I feel understood, meaning the gallery provides a very comfortable space for my artistic output."

Kader Genç, Claudel-Clotho, Oil on Bristol,
100x70 cm, 2022, Polyptych One of 5 pieces


Devin Oktar Yalkın (b. 1981, New York) graduated from the School of Visual Arts with a degree in photography. The artist told us about the gallery where he opened his first solo exhibition in Turkey in 2022.

Devin Oktar Yalkın, My Love I Love Part 7,
pigment ink print

"My experience working with the Evin Art Gallery has been an enlightening one that has helped guide me as an artist and always keeps me looking forward to the next exhibition. I know that there is support for me in terms of creation and ideas. I now have a gallery behind me that has years of experience working with artists and, more importantly, friends there who help facilitate the experience of showing work that is personal and meaningful to me."