By Ferdi Turkten
NEW YORK (AA) – Turkey’s president opened a photo exhibition Monday featuring the works of renowned Turkish-Armenian photographer Ara Guler.
Recep Tayyip Erdogan is currently in New York for the 74th session of the UN General Assembly.
The president hailed the exhibition at Alexander Hamilton Custom House, recalling that similar exhibitions were held in Paris, London and Kyoto, Japan.
He said culture and art serve as a global bridge in developing relations among societies.
"I hope that the works of Ara Guler, who has truly become a global brand in his profession, will reach the masses of different cultures and nations coming to New York from all over the world," said Erdogan.
Turkish pianist and composer Fahir Atakoglu gave a performance and Turkish Nobel chemistry laureate Aziz Sancar was also present at the inauguration.
He said Ara Guler was a man who believed in peace and fraternity.
"The great master, Ara Guler, made history with his lens. His works took a place in important museums and collections of the world and reached millions with his photographs regarding life," said Erdogan.
Guler was born in Istanbul in 1928. Throughout his life, he was a significant global representative of Turkey's creative photography.
He worked as a Near East photojournalist for Time Life magazine in 1956, for Paris Match in 1958 and also for German magazine Stern.
In 1962, Guler was awarded the Master of Leica title in Germany and was featured in a special issue of Swiss Camera magazine, one of the world's leading photography publications.
He also photographed the images for Lord Kinross' 1971 book on Hagia Sophia and the cover photo for a book marking the 90th birthday of Spanish artist Pablo Picasso.
His images on art and art history were published by Time Life, Horizon, Newsweek and Skira Publishing House.
Guler's photos of the works of famed Ottoman architect Mimar Sinan were published in the 1992 book "Sinan: Architect of Suleyman the Magnificent."
In 2002, he was awarded the Legion of Honor Order of Arts and Letters by the French government, and in 2009 he received La Medaille de la Ville de Paris from the Paris Municipality.
He passed away on Oct. 17, 2018 at age 90.
*Servet Gunerigok in Washington contributed to this story