Yunus Emre Institute in London Celebrates Its 10th Anniversary

It is with great pride that Yunus Emre Institute in London celebrated its 10th anniversary on 9th of November 2020. 

Yunus Emre Institute was founded in order to promote the history, culture and language of Turkey. Named after Yunus Emre, a Turkish folk poet and Sufi mystic who greatly influenced Turkish culture, the institute’s mission of cross-cultural exchange, understanding and friendship has been ongoing for 10 great years.

The Institute, which houses 5 Turkish classrooms, 1 exhibition hall and 1 conference hall in its building in Fitzrovia, also serves readers and researchers with a library home to more than 10 thousand books. Most weeks, the ground floor of the building is transformed into an exhibition space, where the public can freely access displays of paintings, sculptures, calligraphy and photography.

Having organised, so far, 545 cultural events at 76 different locations, held 143 courses, 80 workshops, 40 exhibitions, 153 talks, 63 concerts, 86 film screenings, partnered with 47 other institutions and housed over 200 meetings, we feel so fortunate to have touched so many lives and introduced traditional Turkish arts and culture to so many. Although all our events have proven to be unique in their value, notable mentions include our annual Turkish Community Arts Exhibition organised jointly with the Turkish Consulate General in London and is running its third iteration this year. As part of the Institute’s ‘A Pinch of Anatolia’ Project, world-renowned chefs Musa Dagdeviren and Omur Akkor introduced a variety of Turkish delicacies through their tasting menus and talks. In hopes of facilitating cultural exchange and getting involved with the British community, Yunus Emre Institute in London also actively took part in wider-community events including the London Craft Week where Londoners were invited to try traditional Turkish arts.

Many of the events and talks we run are part of specially curated series, including, for example, the “Artists in Conversation” series of talks where artists from across the globe are invited to introduce their crafts and expertise to the British community. This is only but one example of the talks that have been run, many of which are accessible on YouTube.

We cannot, of course, discuss our work without noting the many courses we have run and continue to do so! Highlights of the programmes we have run over the last decade include our always popular courses teaching Turkish which has had over 2,000 students so far, music lessons in various traditional instruments by world-renown musicians, art lessons to try out beautiful arts practised in Turkey for centuries, and the chance to learn Ottoman through Ottoman history.

2020 has proved to be an odd year for all but we are more excited than ever to get our courses and events to you. We have so much lined up – including the “Cut Short, Live Long” short film festival (between 25th and 31st January 2021) which is but one of our projects planned this year.

Take a whistle-stop tour of the last 10 amazing years at the Yunus Emre Insitute in London through our collages below and be sure to follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

We want to thank all those involved in getting these amazing courses and events organised over the past decade. We also want to thank you all for making the last 10 years so memorable and we are so excited to see what the future holds!