PLATFORM by GAPO is a networking platform between emerging and mid-career photographers from Turkey
and cultural professionals abroad.
PLATFORM by GAPO is an initiative aiming to create a sustainable networking platform between emerging and mid-career photographers from Turkey and cultural professionals abroad. It is developed and run by GAPO, an editorial and curatorial team active in the scene since 2007 and even earlier since the Geniş Açı Photography Magazine period (1997-2006).
Even though recognition of photographers from Turkey and their works has relatively increased in the last two decades, it is still not satisfactory. (*) Tens of festivals are organized in Europe and neighboring geographies but the presence of photographers from Turkey in these are very rare. This is mostly because networking and communication between the parties is primarily based on individual efforts. For a certain amount of photographers this individual networking is hard to realize due to language barrier, lack of motivation, not being able to reach the accurate contacts or financial burdens. But what matters most is the lack of institutions specialized in this networking and flow of information between the photographers and the cultural professionals.
Taking this into account, we have decided to establish a new initiative, PLATFORM by GAPO, primarily focusing on this networking. As GAPO, we have been doing this from time to time, welcoming requests from curators or festival teams, suggesting them photographers and putting them in contact with each other. Moreover, we have been taking part in international collaborative projects (**) with individuals and/or organizations in order to help circulating the works by photographers from Turkey.
As a start, in the spring of 2021, we have invited some emerging photographers who have yet received little to no recognition to be an affiliate of PLATFORM by GAPO and with support from SAHA we put up this website showcasing their works. Since then, acting as advisors and editors, together we have been editing their portfolios, artist statements and motivation letters and helping them applying to open calls of various festivals, artist residencies, project grants, etc.
On top of this, and more importantly, periodic updates about the initiative and the photographers are shared with the editors, curators, festival teams and other cultural professionals abroad in order to sustain a regular exchange of information and thus help creating an up to date knowledge about contemporary photography practices in Turkey and widespread the works.
Through February 2022-February 2023, PLATFORM by GAPO is financed by CultureCIVIC, a project by the European Union, and will expand as more and more photographers get affiliated.
(*) Here you can read more about the contemporary photography scene in Turkey, focusing mainly on the first two decades of the 21st century, while looking for the connections with its past, emphasizing the roles of the multitude of agents such as institutions (museums, galleries, associations, project offices) and individuals (artists, writers, teachers, curators and gallerists) who strive to promote photography. The text is written for DutchCulture in 2019.
(**) You can find more info about these collaborative projects on our main website.
PLATFORM by GAPO aims to help creating an up to date knowledge about contemporary photography practices
in Turkey and widespread the works.