Hosted the sultans and now it is the artists turn

Used for recreational purposes by the Sultans nearly four centuries ago the Sultan’s Pavilion (Hunkar Kasri) of the New Mosque Cami in Eminönü is currently an art center where traditional Turkish handicraft is displayed. The historical venue hosted 24 exhibitions last year.

Hosted the sultans  and now it is the artists turn

Regarded as one of the most beautiful examples of the Classical Ottoman Architecture, Sultan’s Pavilion of the New Mosque is still one of the most magnificent historical venues that survived to date from its construction in 1663. This historical heritage of 356 years in Eminönü is now being spotlighted by the art-lovers.


Used to serve the Sultans and their wives for recreational purposes prior to the ceremonies at the times of its construction, the Sultan’s Pavilion of the New Mosque is presently fairly an art center where exclusive artwork of the traditional Turkish handicraft is displayed at. Istanbul Chamber of Commerce had the historical venue restored and thus regained it to the city. The Pavilion nowadays stage at least one event every month.


Water marbling, calligraphy, illumination, miniature, ceramic tiles and pottery, painting, carpets weaving, patchwork, photography, needlework, leather and felt, azernegari (painting with fire) works are exhibited at the Pavilion surviving for nearly 4 centuries. Sultan’s Pavilion of the New Mosque welcomes the art-lovers with wonderful exhibitions launched on the second Thursday of each month.

The venue displaying the prominent products reflecting Turkish handicraft hosted over 100 exhibitions in the last 5 years. The Pavilion gathered the art-lovers in 2019 at 24 different exhibitions.

A unique pavilion

In Ottoman Empire, Sultan’s Pavilions used to be designed for the recreational purposes of Sultans. Many mosques contain separate sections for the Sultans. The characteristic of the Sultan’s Pavilion of the New Mosque making it different from similar structures is that it had been originally designed as a living space. On that sense, Sultan’s Pavilion of the New Mosque’s being designed as a house with even a separate floor for the servants, covered with the 17th century’s ceramic tiles of Iznik render it distinct from the other mosques’ pavilions.

The pavilion is regarded as a symbolic bridge between two cultures as it stands between the historical bastille of Basil I of the Byzantine era and the New Mosque and this is another distinctive feature of it. Transformed into an art studio

As the Pavilion hosts the exhibitions of traditional handicraft, the stores surrounding the historical pavilion were turned into the art studios and workshops of especially the illuminators, miniaturists, marbling artists, ceramists and watercolor artists. Thanks to the social responsibility project launched by the Istanbul Chamber of Commerce, the artists working at these stores have the opportunity to sell their handicraft to the locals and foreign tourists.


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