Nobel prize-winning Turkish writer Orhan Pamuk realized a long-nurtured dream on April 28 with the opening of an actual “Museum of Innocence” – a collection of relics of a half-century of ordinary life – as depicted in his 2008 novel of the same name, Reuters reported.
Pamuk set out “not to do a spectacular or monumental museum but something in the backstreets, something that represents the daily life of the city,” he told a news conference after a press preview.
Situated in a bright, wine-red building in the neighborhood of Çukurcuma, the Museum of Innocence houses real and fabricated artifacts from everyday Turkish life between 1950 and 2000, in homage both to the novel and to Pamuk’s Istanbul.
Pamuk designed the museum with artifacts inspired by Füsun, the lover of the protagonist Kemal in the novel of the same name.
The museum is situated in an old building in Çukurcuma that was made in 1897.
The museum is the visual aspect of Kemal and Füsun’s love story. Light that shines from above on the floor illuminates the belongings of Füsun, providing a visuality to the novel.
Visitors will be able to see 4,213 cigarettes that Füsun smoked, while each story of the museum reflects a period from the past life of Istanbul. In the attic, visitors encounter the room Kemal used to write his novel for many years. The room also features the manuscript for the novel, as well as designs that Pamuk made for the museum.
The museum is located at 24 Çukurcuma Street in Cihangir, Istanbul.