“Tucked away in the maze of Istanbul’s cobbled alleys, the home/gallery of designer Asli Tunca and her husband Carl Vercauteren hardly trumpets its presence. But the quality of the couple’s restored European antiques and Ottoman-influenced bespoke furniture means that discerning clients always beat a path to their unmarked door.”
This is the home to which the stairs on the previous post belong. Notice the Dutch
Baroque Processional Frame tucked under stairs. The coffee table, their own design,
is inlaid with mother of pearl, horn and bone.
In the ground floor reception area, a pair of shellstone sphinxes bought
in Britain have faces modeled on Madame Pompadour.
The handcrafted staircase…took a nearly a year to complete
“They live and work in the Beyoglu district, an area north of the Golden Horn. Originally, it was a hunting ground for Roman and Byzantine nobility, their villas and lodges gradually populating the wooden hillsides that overlook Bosphorus. When the Ottoman Turks conquered Istanbul in 1453, they were eager to keep foreigners out of the sultan’s city, so Beyoglu, where ships stopped to load and unload their cargo, became the obvious place to accommodate them. The district became a thriving trading post for predominantly Genoese and Venetian merchants, and its increasing importance was marked by the creation of several embassies until, by the end of the 17th century, Beyoglu was transformed into a colony of influential foreigners.”
Carl is a Belgian artist and metal sculptor whose focus is on designing and overseeing the creation of
locally made wood and metal furniture, and personally restores objects trouvés and antiques.
Asli buys antique fabrics to dye and rework into curtains, cushions and hangings, and to
upholster Carl’s sofas and chairs.
The medieval house has five floors,
It took the couple 3 years to restore it.
The top floor with its architectural features was perfect for Carl’s studio
and contains furniture and architectural salvage for inspiration.
The middle floors are the family’s living area. And the high ceiling ground floor is
ideal for showing furniture, thus is home and gallery combined.
Books and files in the chestnut- paneled library have been covered with
goatskin parchment and hand labeled on the spine.
For more gorgeous photography visit their site Asli Tunca
Sources: World of Interiors June ’08
Karen Howes, photography Miguel Flores Vianna
House and Garden Oct. ’07