Event reports and reviews

A fascinating pair of workshops at the V&A on Saturday introduced an audience of conservators to the making and dyeing of traditional Korean paper, and of some of its modern uses. The workshops were presented as part of the Adapt & Evolve Conference 2015 organised by the Book & Paper Group of the Institute of […]

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Style Sharing and the AW15 collections at London Fashion Week

by Philip Gowman 8 April 2015
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Once again the Korean Cultural Centre participated fully in London Fashion Week with a contribution to the International Fashion Showcase. The exhibition, entitled Style Sharing and curated by Tory Turk, focused on Korean designers with London training. To complement the displays, British filmmaker Eoin Glaister was asked to produce short videos inspired by the work […]

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Concert notes: Sunwook Kim at the Queen Elizabeth Hall

by Philip Gowman 18 March 2015
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The Southbank Centre’s International Piano Series features some of the best known stars in the classical music world such as Maurizio Pollini and Mitsuko Uchida as well as those at an earlier stage in their musical careers. 2006 Leeds prizewinner Sunwook Kim made his first appearance in the series on 3 March 2015 in the […]

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Exhibition visit: Hur Shan at Gazelli Art House

by Philip Gowman 15 March 2015
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Hur Shan’s first solo show at Gazelli Art House highlights some interesting new directions in his practice. Hur has always been interested in what lies beneath the surface: his architectural installations hack away at concrete pillars or the plasterwork on a wall to reveal treasures embedded in the underlying fabric: an ancient ceramic or a […]

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Brief exhibition visit: Hyojin Park in Reconstructed Minds, at Skipwiths

by Philip Gowman 28 February 2015
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Skipwiths’ inaugural group show, which juxtaposes the works of three contemporary artists alongside ancient Chinese ceramics and 20th Century Western artists, is remarkably successful in drawing parallels – both intended and unintended – between the works. Hyojin Park is represented not just by one of her photographic prints from the Spiritual Garden series but two sculptures […]

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Concert Notes: Korean Chamber Orchestra with John Malkovich at the QEH

by Philip Gowman 26 February 2015
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To celebrate their 50th birthday, the Korean Chamber Orchestra are doing a European tour, and their first stop was London. For works involving just strings, the orchestra is directed by its konzertmeister Kim Min, and for their London concert Finnish conductor Ralf Gothoni took the baton for anything larger. It was ambitious to open their London concert […]

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Exhibition visit: Korean highlights of London Art Fair 2015

by Philip Gowman 25 February 2015
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This year LKL avoided the crowded opening evening of the London Art Fair, opting for a quieter evening later in the week. It’s something we’ll do in future. There still seem to be waiters wandering round offering free drinks, but with fewer punters around you can actually move between the galleries you want to see […]

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Exhibition visit: Out of the Ordinary — Award-winning works by Young Korean Architects

by Philip Gowman 23 February 2015
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LKL reports from the exhibition of young Korean architects at The CASS, which runs until 28 February. In an informative essay in the Out of the Ordinary catalogue, associate curator Junghyun Park gives us a fascinating snippet of information. When Neo meets the Architect of The Matrix in the final scene of The Matrix Reloaded, […]

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Exhibition visit: Shin Meekyoung — Painting Series, at HADA Contemporary

by Philip Gowman 11 February 2015
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According to the notice advertising the exhibition, Shin Meekyoung’s Painting Series questions the values we ascribe to art works: by using expendable material rather than canvas and oils, and by avoiding the depiction of any discernible subject matter, she aims “to question the authority the painting has enjoyed for centuries.” Shin’s soap paintings are meant […]

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Exhibition visit: Young In Hong — In Her Dream, at the ICA

by Philip Gowman 9 February 2015
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An opulent table set for dinner, with rather unsettling ornaments, greets you in the ICA Theatre for the performance of Young In Hong’s piece In Her Dream. A solo cellist / vocalist starts playing slow arpeggios as four female dancers take their place at table, their eyes blindfolded in black veils. They take their veils […]

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Festival film review: Manshin – Ten Thousand Spirits

by Philip Gowman 26 January 2015
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What is it that makes Park Chan-kyong’s biopic of Korea’s national shaman so compelling on so many levels? Right from the start, the narrative grips you. We meet Kim Geum-hwa, the subject of the movie, praying for the success of the film. She also prays for the health of the film crew, and asks the […]

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Park Chan-kyong at Iniva – worth an investment of time

by Philip Gowman 15 January 2015
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If you go along to Park Chan-kyong’s solo show at Iniva, make sure you set aside enough time – at least a couple of hours. And those of you who went to his talk at the Korean Cultural Centre in November last year will wish you had been better prepared on what he was going to […]

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Exhibition visit: Contemporary Korean Silversmithing and Jewellery at the KCC

by Philip Gowman 30 December 2014
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The jewellery and silversmithing exhibition at the KCC is soon coming to an end, to make way for a fashion-related exhibition. Go along before it’s too late… Go along for the wonderful vessels of Kyosun Jung, whose use of silver wire in the decoration make the finished product look like the product of Moorcroft potteries: […]

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Korean War Memorial unveiled in London

by Philip Gowman 11 December 2014
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The South Korean Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se had a busy Wednesday last week as part of a three-day visit to the UK. According to a Ministry of Foreign Affairs press release, top of the agenda was the first annual Strategic Dialogue meeting between the two countries agreed during President Park’s state visit last year. The […]

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LKFF 2014: the conversations

by Philip Gowman 23 November 2014
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The London Korean Film Festival is not just about getting acquainted with the latest in Korean movies. It is also an opportunity to meet some of the people behind those movies – actors, directors and producers. Opportunities for engaging with these film professionals vary: for an ever-growing group of aficionados there is the offer of round-table […]

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Festival Film Review: Hwajang / Revivre

by Philip Gowman 17 November 2014
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Well, I was right. Ahn Sung-ki confessed in the Q+A which followed the screening of Hwajang that one of his most difficult tasks in portraying Oh Sang-moo, a senior executive in a cosmetics company, was to project certain aspects of being old – of being blocked inside because of the swollen prostate, of being more […]

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North Korean artists paint London scenes, on show at the DPRK embassy

by Philip Gowman 7 November 2014
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Seven years ago, artists from Pyongyang’s Mansudae Studios came to London with a wide range of works in a variety of genres. There were ceramics, oils, chosonhwa, embroidery, and of course the images that caught everyone’s attention: the propaganda posters. The location was opposite the Institute of Directors in Pall Mall. This week, a different […]

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