Borusan Music and Art House


Project name: Borusan Music and Art House
Location: Beyoglu / Istanbul / Turkey
Client: Borusan Automotive Co.
Architect: GAD & Gokhan Avcioglu
Project team: Serkan Cedetas, Gozde Nur Demir, Ozan Ertug, Arzu Meyvaci, Ertugrul Morcol, Yeliz Ozsoy, Bora Soykut,Baris Ucar, Ayhan Urguplu
Start / Completion: 2007 / 2009
Building type: low rise
Project type: Cultural, Redevelopment
Project site area: 230 sqm
Construction area: 1.900 sqm
Status: built
2012 Highly Commended Public Service Architecture with Borusan Music and Art House for Europe, International Property Awards
2011 Best Alternative Investments for the Borusan Music and Art House, ArkiPARC
2011 International Architecture Award for the Borusan Music and Art House, Chicago Athenaeum and Europe Architecture Centre 


The Borusan Music and Art Center in the historic neighborhood of Beyoglu, Istanbul is a multi-purpose event space for exhibitions and performance. This new space symbolizes the cultural and arts renaissance occurring throughout the city while paying homage to the grand architectural legacy of Istanbul.

GAD’s preserved and restored the delicate historic shell typical of the Belle Époque era buildings along the famous Istiklal Caddesi. The building core was carefully removed to reveal a constructible void. Into this, GAD inserted a structural ‘box’ which created the opportunity for a modern program within the building core. This ‘box’ was designed and built using a lightweight steel Diagrid frame system along its perimeter. 
The entrance level features an exhibition space that greets the public with walking columns lining the perimeter of the space, in direct opposition to the austere street façade. Open performance spaces on the 2nd and third levels can accommodate up to 200 people each. The fourth floor is a rehearsal space, while the 5th and 6th floors are multi-purpose spaces. The rooftop terrace offers magnificent panoramic views of the Istanbul.

This strategy allows for an open plan and offers programmatic flexibility between all floors. The inserted ‘box’ seems to defy gravity, framed and articulated from by the historic masonry shell. This juxtaposition activates a playful tension not only between materials and construction, but between past and present. This restoration illustrates the notion of "mask and skull,” calling out the former building’s shell as ornamentation and the program within as a perfectly disconnected space within.