Turgut Cansever has practiced architecture in Turkey since 1946. Trained in Turkey, he developed a conceptual approach based on a search for regional expression in architecture. Among his best known projects are the Anatolian Club Hotel (1951-1956) and the Demir Holiday Village in Bodrum (1971). As a planner, Cansever has headed projects in Istanbul on preservation and restoration, pedestrian zoning, and metropolitan development.
(Source: Architcture and Community: Building in the Islamic World Today. The Aga Khan Award for Architecture. Millerton, NY: Aperture. 1983.)
Recipient of the Aga Khan Award for Architecture in 1980.
This library and conference center acknowledges local architectural traditions in ways that significantly affect its form. The three-storey skylit central atrium, for example, reflects the formal organisation of Ottoman madrasas. It functions as a protected extension of the urban space; all the major activities of the building are grouped around it. The careful control of light emphasises the public quality of the central space and the more intimate character of the surrounding spaces. Modern building products are juxtaposed against traditional local materials. The poured-in-place concrete frame, for example, is contrasted with rough-hewn Ankara stone and polished Marmora marble. Aluminium window frames exist in harmony with wooden screens. The jury noted that the building reacts "against the International Style that has characterised building in Ankara since the 1930s and is an example of what can be learned from tradition and a pointer to a more appropriate architectural language."