New Civic Rituals
Büyükada Songlines
Studio Ossidiana
Project description

Supported by Stimuleringsfonds, Consulate General of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality, Adalar Municipality.

Büyükada Songlines is a floating garden populated by plants, soil, insects and birds traveling across the Marmara sea, as a floating embassy of the Prince’s Islands archipelago.  Both a design project and a journey, the garden will host people and other animals, events and conversations, becoming a nomadic pavilion populated by the life and the stories of the archipelago.


Conceived as a mediterranean garden representative of the archipelago’s ecology and of its multicultural vocation, it is inhabited by three installations: an earthly platform, representative of the soils of the islands; a marine - terrazzo table, made with shells and rocks gathered in Büyükada; and a grid of perches and bird feeders, for migratory birds and gulls to rest upon. At the completion of the journey, together with the plants of the garden, the triptych of sculptural elements will be donated to the archipelago, and permanently installed in Büyükada.


Part of a tradition of pavilions and rituals which binds water cities across Europe and Asia, Büyükada Songlines is an investigation of our complex relationships with other species. The garden, during its journey, will be a living diary of stories and species, places and people, forms of curation and cultivation: an embassy of the archipelago and its ecologies.


Designed by Studio Ossidiana, and hosting unique material research tied to the soils and minerals of the islands, the floating garden is animated by a programme curated in collaboration with The Young Curators Group, the NGO Dünya Mirası Adalar (World Heritage

Islands), Istanbul’s Açık Radio, and Deniz Yaşamını Koruma Derneği (Marine Life Conservation Society). Büyükada Songlines is a project by Studio Ossidiana (Alessandra Covini, Giovanni Bellotti with Sze Wing Chan, Marie Saladin, Lyubov Viller, Mariagiulia Pistonese, Daniel Marshall) with Sera Tolgay, Derya Tolgay, Şirin İskit, Daniel Marshall, Merve Yücel, Kerim Bayer, and Ahmet Topbaş.


Project Manager: Merve Yücel

Landscape: Fatih Koçak, Ceren Beker, Büşra Fındıklı, Sıdık Kudüs Müminzade (Nadir Bitkiler Fidanlığı)

Platform plants: Derya Tolgay

Cast elements producer: Urban Atölye 

Construction: Muammer Temel, Yalçın Kaan Öztemir, Serhat Öztemir, Özkan Şener, Abdullah Tutuk, Berke Şener, Ali Babacan

Transportation: Mehmet Sayan, Hasan Sayan, Göksal Polat, Burak Furkan Duru

Engineering: Ahmet Topbaş, Mehmet Onur Öztepe

Videographer: Tamer Giray

Special thanks to:

(Public Programme): Serco Ekşiyan, İpek Çankaya, Dilek Yalçın Demiralp, Burak Ayaz, Koenraad Van Lier, Mete Özel, Gündüz Vassaf, Derya Tolgay, Talin Büyükkürkciyan, Nikolai Galen, Nur Eda Topçu, Sibel Horada, Özdeş Özbay, Volkan Narcı, Cem Dalyan, Ferhan Çoşkun, Cihan Erdönmez, Akgün İlhan, Ünal Akkemik, Dadans Dans Topluluğu: Dila Yumurtacı, Melek Nur Dudu, Merve Uzunosman, Korhan Gümüş, Tansel Korkmaz, Bahar Özay, Dolunay Varol

(DMA Organisation): Derya Tolgay, Şirin İskit, Sera Tolgay

(DMA Project Support Team): Merve Yücel, Kerim Bayer, Ahmet Topbaş, Hikmet Eliz, Yasemin Bahçekapılı, Fulya Baran


Studio Ossidiana (Italy/Netherlands) is an award winning practice in architecture, design and research led by Alessandra Covini and Giovanni Bellotti. Founded in 2015, the practice is always in search of new material expressions to translate visions into engaging spaces and objects.

Playfulness, tactility and inclusivity play a major role in the studio’s projects: stories are told and objects are brought to life through materials and spaces that call for action, discovery and wonder.

Working across multiple scales, Studio Ossidiana blurs the boundary between architecture, design, art, landscape, and urban strategies.

Studio Ossidiana is based in Rotterdam, working with an international team of architects, designers and researchers, and is actively involved locally and globally with projects across the Netherlands, Italy, Turkey, and the US.

The practice’s work has been broadly published in both printed and digital media (The New York Times Style Magazine, Architectural Review, Domus, Forum, Nai10 Publishers, Artribune, Interni, Icon, Corriere della Sera, La Repubblica, Metropolis M, DeArchitect, Architectuur NL), and exhibited in collective and solo exhibitions (Istanbul Design Biennial 2020-21, Venice Architecture Biennale 2021, Triennale di Milano 2020, Istanbul Biennial 2019, CIVA 2019, Fellbach Triennial of Small Sculpture 2019, Het Nieuwe Institute 2019, Marres House for Contemporary Culture Maastricht 2017, Milan Design Week 2017, Jan Van Eyck Academie 2017, Dutch Design Week 2016).


#mineral #animal #ecological

Dünya Mirası Adalar (World Heritage Islands), Deniz Yaşamını Koruma Derneği (Marine Life Conservation Society)
This project opens in June 2021.
Büyükada / Golden Horn
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