SALT—Turkey’s acclaimed cultural organization—has opened a second branch in Istanbul’s Karaköy neighborhood. Housed in the Imperial Ottoman Bank headquarters dating from the 19th century, SALT Galata opened on November 22, 2011 as a cutting-edge new contemporary arts center. It’s a cultural hub, exhibition space, public library, and research center—all in one. The original location for SALT (meaning “pure” in Turkish) is in Beyoğlu. The new SALT Galata has already staged some talked-about exhibits, like Foto Galatasaray (vintage photos by Maryam Şahinyan documenting five decades of Istanbul life), and Scramble for the Past: A Story of Archaeology in the Ottoman Empire 1753 – 1914.
Inside, there’s also a trendy Italian restaurant called Ca'd'Oro, overlooking the Golden Horn, and an outpost of the Robinson Crusoe bookstore (a cool destination on Istiklal Street). The old bank vault in the basement has been converted into a museum inside a museum—dedicated to telling the story of the Ottoman Bank, formerly the central bank and treasurer of the Ottoman Empire. For more information about SALT Galata, visit www.saltonline.org.
Image via The Guide Istanbul