The culture of popular Turkish magazines is facing nowadays a delicate situation, under the government restrictions and censorship that have increased in recent years. 

Many rulers throughout the history of the Republic have recognized free magazines' potential to limit their power. In many cases this potential is evident through the illustrations made by the magazines' cartoonists. Governmental restrictions and even prison sentences, actually cause an opposite effect: many cartoonists are motivated to act in order to preserve the freedom of speech, one of the critical components of a democratic society. 

 

During my visit to Istanbul, I walked through the city streets searching for ways to distribute the content shown in the magazines. I wanted to find a new, unfamiliar distribution venue using places and means that already exist in the city.

I noticed that street food stands have the potential to distribute the magazines' cartoons as they are scattered throughout  the city and serve many people.

Maybe the most popular Turkish street food is the local bagel sold at every corner of the city: Simit. 

Thousands of bakeries bake Simit every day

The Simits are distributed to vendors throughout Istanbul

Tens of thousands of Simit are sold every day handed out on a piece of paper.

If each person who buys Simit will get it wrapped in a paper with an illustration from the magazine printed on it -the cartoon will reach many people every day.

Leman is an extremely popular weekly magazine that dates back to 1985. It critiques and satirizes Turkish society. The project was done in collaboration with Leman, which kindly provided illustrations.

 © by Nivi Lehavi