Dreaming of a perfect life in Istanbul…

“You will find the life you are looking for in this perfectly planned community. Leave the past behind as a fond memory! You will rebuild your life in the colourful and lively world of My World. You are the centre of the world from now on.”

The words of this Ağaoğlu advertisement sound enticing and convincing. Who wouldn’t want to live in a perfect world, full of opportunities?

Ağaoğlu is one of Turkey’s largest and most influential real estate companies that has constructed an impressive number of gated communities in the past few years. Its apartments have attracted thousands of home owners and investors not only in search of a safe, luxurious and convenient place to live, but also looking for a new way of life, going beyond the borders of traditional neighbourhood living.

Dutch filmmaker Remmelt Lukkien and I became curious. How come these types of projects have become so popular in Istanbul over the past decade? Why are many people so eager to live in these kinds of homes? What is the secret to the success of these projects? And how do they influence urban life in Europe’s largest metropolis?

These questions guided us to Istanbul, where we are currently researching the lives inside the gates of several prestigious gated community projects developed by Ağaoğlu, and another Turkish real estate company, Sinpaş. Our research should result in a film plan on the basis of which we could realise a documentary film on Istanbul’s gated communities and their residents and creators.

Today we explored two Ağaoğlu projects in Batı Ataşehir: My World Ataşehir and My Towerland. Join us on a photographic journey of two fascinating projects situated in an urban environment that changes on a daily basis…

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