The exhibition “Greek Painters of Istanbul at the Topkapi Palace” was inaugurated by Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, with the presence of Turkish Minister of Culture Mr. Ertuğrul Günay. The exhibition includes about 100 paintings of the 19th and the 20th century and was organized at the Imperial Stables of the Palace by the Directorate of the Museum, in cooperation with the Consulate General of Greece in Istanbul.
The exhibition was based on the research that has been conducted by Mayda Saris in her book “Greek Painters of Istanbul” and with Mr. Yusuf Benli’s help, who is the manager of the Museum. It mainly includes portraits of the Ottoman Empire’s Sultans and several personalities, portraits of Patriarchs and ecclesiastical paintings of the 19th and the 20th century.
The works presented in the exhibition come from collections from the Topkapi Palace, of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, the Halki Theological School, Greek-Orthodox churches of the city and private collections. Before the opening of the exhibition, the Ecumenical Patriarch underlined the great contribution of the painters, regarding the formation of the cultural identity of the Ottoman Empire and referred to the exhibition as an important show. The exhibition depicts the silence and ignorance covering the presence and the work of Greek artists. The exhibition will be open until the 30th of June 2011.