BMW Art Guide by Independent Collectors

Papko Art Collection

Works of Turkish Modernism at the legendary Ralli Apartment in Istanbul

Öner Kocabeyoğlu
Öner Kocabeyoğlu

Textile magnate Öner Kocabeyoğlu is considered one of the most passionate collectors on the Bosporus. At the age of thirty he fell in love with a gouache by Selim Turan. Since that time his enthusiasm for art has never wavered. It took a decade to assemble the basis of his collection, which now boasts 1 500 works by over 100 artists such as Fikret Mualla Saygı, Mübin Orhon, and Abidin Dino, as well as international names such as Julian Schnabel, Jannis Kounellis, Sarah Morris, or Andreas Gursky. The Papko Art Collection is housed in the Ralli Apartment, where Turkish avant-garde artist Fahrelnissa Zeid—who is also featured in the collection—once lived and presented her first exhibition in 1945. It’s no coincidence that some of the works in the collection have a French flair: Kocabeyoğlu is particularly interested in Turkish artists who lived in exile in France after 1940 and whose works are strongly inspired by the École de Paris.

Berlin-based journalist Frauke Schlieckau works as Deputy Editorial Director at Kobalt Productions where she oversees the European cultural magazine show Metropolis by Arte. She holds a PhD in literature studies, and as a writer and director she produces documentaries, reportages, and artist portraits for Arte, 3Sat, ZDF, and Deutsche Welle.

All images courtesy Papko Art Collection, Istanbul