Workshop + Exhibition - Migrations, Art, and Identities: Two Migratory Experiences from the Russian Imperial Space to Constantinople / Istanbul, A Century Apart (1919-1921 and 2022).

02/10/2023 6:00 pm -8:00 pm
Workshop + Exhibition - Migrations, Art, and Identities: Two Migratory Experiences from the Russian Imperial Space to Constantinople / Istanbul, A Century Apart (1919-1921 and 2022).

In English

In Hybrid



Ebru Esra Satıcı, Curator at Meşher. Alexis Gritchenko: A Refugee Artist in Istanbul (1919-1921).

Nikita Isakov, independent researcher. Russian Speakers of the Second Rome: How does “Russianness” or “Russian identity” get constructed outside of Russia?

Eva Rapoport, research associate at IFEA, member of the association Kovcheg. “/Imagine unimaginable”: employing an AI to tell the story of Russian anti-war emigration.



Natalia Pashkeeva, Research associate CERCEC (UMR 8083 EHESS/CNRS), Paris


Artistic representations, as reflections of society, can also bear witness to migratory experiences, as demonstrated by research in art history and artistic transfers conducted since the 1990s. On one hand, Michel Espagne and Mickaël Werner have highlighted the role of the artist as a “cultural mediator” and a significant actor in intercultural relations in their studies of transfers in the Franco-German space. On the other hand, scholars such as Susan Rubin Suleiman, Joseph Horowitz, Jean-Pierre Morel, Wolfgang Asholt, Georges-Arthur Goldschmidt, and Christine Gouzi have emphasized moments of rupture, tension, and resistance in the artistic creation processes, especially during forced migrations caused by wars, revolutions, political, ethnic, or religious persecutions, as well as economic crises. While literary creations may be directly and significantly affected by writers’ inability to write in their native language when they find themselves in a new artistic environment, the language of non-textual artistic works, as universal as it may appear, can also be influenced by the traumas associated with the migratory context. It can also become a tool for exploring or challenging complex and intimate issues related to identity constructions. 

In this regard, the meeting scheduled for October 2, 2023, at the French Institute of Anatolian Studies (Institut français d’études anatoliennes, IFEA) in Istanbul, Turkey, aims to address the aforementioned issues by examining two distinct migration experiences originating from the Russian imperial space and lived in Constantinople / Istanbul a century apart, within different historical contexts.

We will begin by discussing the experience of Alexis Gritchenko (1883-1977), an artiste who sought refuge in Constantinople (1919-1921). He had received his education in Chernihiv, Kyiv and Moscow. His decision to leave the former Russian Empire after the 1917 revolution was driven by the violence of the civil war. The choice of his city of refuge, then officially known as Constantinople, was influence by his desire to live and work in a city that ignited his imagination. After settling in France in 1922, Alexis Gritchenko, who referred to himself as « the Ukrainian wanderer,” took part in numerous art exhibitions, often simply identified as “Russian art.”

Next, we will address questions related to Russian identity in connection with the spontaneous departure of many Russian citizens from Russia following the Russian troops invasion of Ukraine in February 2022. Once again, we will focus on the cases of those wo arrived in Istanbul, but this time in the spring and summer of 2022. How do these new, involuntary members of the Russian diaspora in Istanbul perceive their Russian identity? Their representations of the realities of war and their own national identity are at the heart of the work of a photographer and anthropologist who, along with her colleague, collected their testimonies and then visualized them using the artificial neural network Midjourney to generate images from textual descriptions. Eva Rapoport’s exhibition, “/Imagine Unimaginable,” which opens on Otober 2 at the IFEA, indeed represents a fusion between the work of human intelligence and so-called artificial intelligence. The convergence of these two “intelligences” in artistic representations raises crucial questions in our time concerning creativity, authenticity, speed, and ultimately the potential redefinition of artistic expression. This will provide us with the opportunity to discuss, during our exchanges, the friction points between technology and creativity and the philosophical, aesthetic, and ethical implications that arise from them.



Conférences - Revolutions beyond "the West": Connections and Comparative Perspectives

06/10/2023 9:30 am - 07/10/2023 4:30 pm
Conférences - Revolutions beyond "the West": Connections and Comparative Perspectives

Interventions en anglais
En présentiel

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  • Lieu: Metro Han
  • Adresse: Şahkulu, Çukur, Erkanı Harp Sk. No: 2, 34421 Beyoğlu

Ces deux journées de conférences sont co-organisées avec le Tarih Vakfı.

Organisée par Y. Doğan Çetinkaya, Şeyma Afacan, Philippe Bourmaud, İsmet Akça et coordonnée par Y. Doğan Çetinkaya, Şeyma Afacan, Philippe Bourmaud, la conférence "Revolutions Beyond the "West" : Connexions historiques et perspectives comparatives" se tiendra les 6 et 7 octobre à Taksim, Metro Han, dans le cadre des célébrations du 100e anniversaire de la République turque.

*Il n'y aura pas de traduction simultanée pendant l'événement et ne pourra être accueilli qu'un nombre limité de participants.




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