The 2009 Istanbul biennial began with a storm. The night of September 10th a flash flood washed away almost two thousand houses out by the airport, as well as a couple of schools and hospitals. Factory floors were six feet deep in mud. Forty people died and many others went missing.
And like always, it wasn’t the rain that killed people, it was shoddy construction, bad working conditions.
While crews were dragging bodies from the debris, down by the Bosporus, in front of the Istanbul Modern, there was an inauguration ceremony to open the biennial. The main speaker was Mustafa Koç, representing Koç Holdings, the main corporate sponsor of the event.