Meet, Explore, Be inspired: UK design at the 3rd Istanbul Design Biennial 

2 seconds, 2 days, 2 years, 200 years, 200,000 years

British Council is proud to support UK designers’ participation in the 3rd Istanbul Design Biennial. Curated by Mark Wigley and Beatriz Colomina, the biennial will be held from 22 October to 20 November and will explore the intimate relationship between the concepts of “design” and “human.”  Whether you are a design professional or just have an interest in design, don’t miss this remarkable show and works by the following designers and artists from the UK. 

Please see the photos and video from the 3rd Istanbul Design Biennial.

Moreover, the interviews of the design professionals from the UK are below:

VIsItIng hours

Tuesday – Sunday 10.00 – 19.00

Thursdays – 10.00 – 20.00

The 3rd Istanbul Design Biennial is free of charge


  • Galata Greek Primary School, 
  • Studio-X Istanbul, 
  • Depo, 
  • Istanbul Archaeological Museums
  • Alt.

See the map here.


Our mini quiz about UK Design at the 3rd Istanbul Design Biennial has now ended. the winners of the competition are below. We kindly ask them to contact to claim their prize.


  • Tuğçe ÇELİK: London Design Guide by Max Fraser  
  • Zeynal Fatih OĞUZ: Venice Biennale British Pavilion bag, set of postcards and catalogue
  • Duygu ÖZKAN: 3rd Istanbul Design Biennial Catalogue and Programme

DesIgn ConnectIons Istanbul

Design Connections Istanbul is the British Council’s industry networking programme, which took place between 19 and 23 October as part of the 3rd Istanbul Design Biennial. The programme aims to broker connections and increase collaboration between the UK and Turkey, offering design curators from the UK an inspiring and immersive introduction to the best of the Biennial alongside meetings with leading designers and organisations. 

Please see the photos from Design Connections Istanbul Reception. 



Lucy McRae

Institute of Isolation

“Could we design isolation like an architect designs a building or a chemist designs a vaccine?” Institute of Isolation by “body architect” Lucy McRae is a short film exploring how isolation could be consciously used to improve human capacity to adapt in extreme conditions.

Tacita Dean

Human Treasure

Tacita Dean’s Human Treasure is a 16mm short colour film with optical sound that documents a day in the life of a Japanese “human treasure,” a term denoting someone from the traditional arts who has been recognised as having reached the highest of achievements in their craft.

Stuart Grey

Space Debris 1957-2016

Space Debris 1957–2016 is a two-minute animation video by Stuart Grey that visualizes the ever-expanding constellation of space debris that orbits our planet. 

Mathew Hale


Mathew Hale’s 5th HELENA is a multimedia installation that explores the concepts of celebrity, mass media, domesticity, privacy, sexuality and death. 

Lesley Lokko

Maropeng Acts I & II

Maropeng Acts I & II is a series of visual essays on the origins of species, time, place and scale prompted by two South African locations in close proximity:

Marshmallo Laser Feast


Memex is a music video for British band Duologue developed by UK-based studios Marshmallow Laser Feast, Analog, and FBFX.

Jussi Parikka

A Media Archaeology of Ingenious Designs

A Media Archaeology of Ingenious Designs looks at the automata and astrolabes developed within the Arabic-Islamic culture of 9th to 13thcentury as early precedents of today’s programmable machines.

Territorial Agency

The Museum of Oil

Territorial Agency’s The Museum of Oil documents the spread of the oil extraction industry across the whole planet in a vast continuous web.

Madelon Vriesendorp

The Hand: The Whole Man in Miniature

Madelon Vriesendorp’s mixed-media installation The Hand is part of her larger investigation of the human body. Here she interprets the human hand not only as a structural anatomy, but also as a “thinking organ”, symbol, gesture, and conceptual tool. 

Revital Cohen and Tur van Baalen

The Immortal

Revital Cohen and Tuur van Balen’s The Immortal consists of a single-channel video and a drawing that document the artists’ installation of five interconnected life-support machines.

Rana Salam

Beirut Bombastic!

Beirut Bombastic! is a site-specific installation for the pop-up café of the 3rd Istanbul Design Biennial at the Galata Greek Primary School. 

Lucia Allais

Mixed Being

Mixed Being investigates the archaeological operations initiated in 1946 at the fortress of Karatepe that ultimately led to the creation of the Karatepe-Aslantaş Open-Air Museum.