Istanbul - Art for Sunday

Time always flies too quickly in Istanbul. It was already Sunday morning and our last day. But since the shops were open, of course we went to do some last minute shopping!

About an hour later we got back to the hotel. And hey, the lustres in our lobby are nearly as beautiful as those in the Dolmabahce palace!
Trying to fit more stuff into our suitcases...
We had checked out of our rooms, but there was still a lot of time until we had to catch our flight.
Then the ladies got their much deserved round of pampering at this lovely hamam. I couldn't because of my fresh tattoo but they were in good hands here.
Right across the street is this big building of Tophane, a former cannon factory. It is an art museum now and I actually had wanted to visit it for years but it had always seemed closed. This was my lucky day to finally enter it.
Checking out a smaller, currently unused part first...
So many doors...

The building itself is impressive enough, but with this exhibition it was just perfect.
Just look at how the domes of the roof compliment the 3D abstract paintings!

The coolest thing about this object is that it's not painted but a woven carpet.
Kind of a mirror selfie
As you might have noticed I got into quite a photo frenzy. I greatly enjoyed this exhibition.
Zebras are cool.
And some more dome pictures

Did you know that Vasarely also designed the Renault logo?

In the opposite building there was another show:
OK, I didn't quite get the rock-on-metal objects. But these bird-inspired sculptures were really cool.
Backward looking bird
Back outside - another green door.
Walking up the street again. Most shops had closed for Sunday, but some were open. I thought that ceramics totally counted as art as well, so I went inside and marvelled at all those beautiful objects.
Olives on the left, cherries on the right. And yes, I bought a little tulip-painted bowl and a tile.
More modern ruins, this time in Cihangir. It's just a question of time until they get renovated or completely torn down.
The walls have eyes.
Next I visited the Museum of Innocence. It's a cute little museum but I found out that it would actually better to first read the novel with the same name by Orhan Pamuk to get all the references.
Walking on in Cihangir, so many beautiful old buildings and doors.

At the car park
After all the quiet backstreets I was suddently in the highlife again!
This was my last chance to eat a nice piece of cake at Özsüt to prepare me for the inevitable good-bye...

And then, at 6 PM the driver was waiting in front of the hotel to pick us up and drive us to the airport.
Looking back at my second home, the Grand Hotel de Londres. Until next time!
At the airport I had the stupid idea of wanting to cash in my tax free refund. I had done this before, it had been a hassle and I told myself that it wasn't worth it.

Somehow though I thought this time I could do it since we got to the airport really early. Bad decision. All the standing in line, waiting for receipts to be stamped, then rushing to the next counter to get just a handful of money...
I mean, it certainly was OK for that lady with her new Rolex watch and Chanel bag. But not worth it for my raincoat and bag full of cheap trousers.
So this picture is to remind myself: Don't do it again!
To top it all off, there was heavy traffic at the airport and we waited for about 45 minutes in the airplane until we could finally take off.... At least I was tired enough to get a little sleep on the flight home.

And so ended my 20th trip to Istanbul. Of course there will be number 21 because I left a piece of my heart there long ago...