In this city, protesting is not part of the public space anymore. Arriving in Istanbul, we understood that the shadow of Taksim Square and Gezi Park was here, but no one was talking about it. This silence appeared to us as a tiredness. One year of protest in Istanbul didn’t bring anything. But our path brought us on the other side of Istanbul, in Kadiköy.
Guided by Yavuz, we discover the other side of the protest: the artistic and cultural expression. In the small Streets of Kadiköy, the voice of the protest was still present. A squat and an alternative coffee place were two answers to the political illness: a lack of hope in the future. The occupied building was used for discussions, meetings and informal conferences about art and society.
Few streets further, a manifesto on the wall welcomes the visitors in the Kumsu Kafe. In this place, the regular rules of the capitalism are not working. Here, you can be waiter and client, you can be cook and consumer. You pay the amount you want and you can even not pay at all. You are free to estimate the economical values as you want. You are in a public space but, at the same time, you are at home.
Don’t ask for the waiter, he will not show up. But open your eyes, and there will be someone to explain it to you. Suddendly, the usual act of consumption requires much more involvement on your part. The vegan or vegetarian food with a lot of care and anyone can be the chef of the day. A cup of tea, joint at some reggae music offers a sweet and memorable experience.
In the Komsu Kafe, people dream about another society, that would be a network of places like this one. A network of souls, that would try to create better everyday life and opportunities for communities. Those communities are composed of international migrants or students and of carefull inhabitants of Istanbul and Kadiköy. This place is again a place of hope. Istanbul can continue to dream.