The Cinema and Theatre Museum created by Turker Inanoglu, the Chairman of the Türker Inanoglu Foundation (TURVAK), moved from Kavacık to its new location in Beyoglu, near Galatasaray Lise early this year. The three-story museum is full of rare artefacts from Turkey’s cinematic history and includes a 50,000 plus book Library. There is also an education centre, coordinated by the Museum’s director Erol Şenel. The day I visited the Museum and Library, many students were busy observing the historical movie equipment and admiring the vax statues of famous artists. It ıs a wonderful place to visit, especially fort he Turkish-Americans who come to Turkey on a personal or business trips.
Some of the cinema and projection machines displayed dates back to early 1900s. Photographs of many immortal Turkish cinema and theatre artists are also displayed. Most of the collections are from Erler Film, established by Türker Inanoglu in 1960 after he moved to İstanbul from Safranbolu, which still produces some of the TV series. There are also paintings and caricatures of Faruk Alpkurt who worked as a cartoonist for the Hayat magazine in the 60s and 70s.
Separate rooms are dedicated to the works of several important contributors to the world of cinema and theatre in Turkey. The Fuat Uzkınay Cinema Machines Hall displays the first sound recording camera that Turkish director Muhsin Ertuğrul used. Fuat Uzkınay made the first Turkish film who is remembered by his photographs and many documents, including the typewriter written scenarios used in the film.
It is a nostalgic place to visit and see the photographs of hundreds of artists that we watched in the movies. As I walked outside, I thought perhaps a Turkish Library and Museum should be established in New York City to give the new generation of Turks growing up in America an opportunity to appreciate their heritage and show their American friends the rich culture and history of Turkey and famous Turks beginning with Mustafa Kemal Ataturk.
Januray 25, 2011, Istanbul