Balat: Living Together

An interdisciplinary and multimedia project, “Balat: Living Together” seeks to research, visualize and narrativize the memory of Balat, one of the oldest districts of Istanbul. Once home to various ethnic and social groups such as Armenians, Jews, Greeks and Turks, Balat today is on the verge of losing its multiethnic and multicultural image to gentrification. The traditional architecture and fading memories of the past, however, still bear witness to the long-gone multiethnic community. St Archangel Armenian church, the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate, a few other Greek churches, a Bulgarian Orthodox church, and the Orhid synagogue can all be found at an arm’s length from each other. 

The book and the web platform are where one can find the multidisciplinary research encompassing oral stories, articles, interviews, archival, as well as photo and video materials that recreate the image of the district.