Les Arts Turcs

Do Not Miss It In Istanbul,Turkey

Istanbul. In a city of more than 20 million people, over 3000 mosques, hundreds of restaurants and dozens of tourist attractions, there is ONE gem that stands out like the diamond in the rough. Les Arts Turcs is the place to go if you’re seeking to learn and understand traditional Turkish and Ottoman arts. Established in 1998, Les Arts Turcs is an education center offering a vast curriculum of one off courses and cultural experiences.

I discovered this micro arts gallery/education center in 2019 through internet experiences. It was my first visit to Istanbul, and when in the 1st largest city in Europe, what is one to do? So many choices and so little time. As an aspiring artist myself, the many classes offered at Les Arts Turcs was clearly the place for me to start.

Tucked away in the heart of Sultanahmet, up above the bustle of the city streets, you will find a sliver of history preserved through the teaching of the many artforms traditional to theTurkish and Ottoman empire. There are a plethora of classes to choose from, all taught by master artists offering their knowledge in their spare time. The brain child of this fabulous creation is Nurdogan Sengüler.( Instagram. @nurdogansengule )

Nurdogan is an artist himself with his background in photography, but his real passion is simply the arts. He wanted to create one place where artists in this massive city could come together and showcase their mastery. Of the multitude of classes offered, I chose to take Ebru painting with Fikret Gürney. I had never before heard of Ebru painting, but my desire to “become” a painter easily led me to this decision.

I was warmly welcomed at the studio by Nurdogan, Fikret and Alp. As an English speaking traveler, I was so pleased to find that the class was taught by an instructor who speaks English. But not to fret if you do not speak English, Nurdogan is a linguist who humbly confesses that he speaks 5 or 6 languages, some of them the most difficult in the world. Both Nurdogan and Alp are always available to translate as necessary.

Having no knowledge of Ebru, I was given a brief history of the artform followed by 2 hours of very specific teaching of this most unusual style of painting. The training I received was expert to say the least and I was immediately hooked. I have since returned to Les Arts Turcs several times, improving my skills and education as an Ebru painter and am inspired to try many of the other classes offered.

If you’re planning to visit the magnificent city of Istanbul, be sure to include Les Arts Turcs on your journey. From Dervish performances to calligraphy and cooking you will find a vast range of choices to truly experience this culture’s unique history of art.

Just visit their web page and see their all workshops.

Have a beauty full day,

Lola Manolis Güzel
( Instagram. @lolaloves2travel )