BTS tops the UK album charts

BTS is the first Korean band to top the UK album charts, according to the Official Charts Company. Their new EP, Map of The Soul: Persona, released on 12 April, came straight in at number 1, while its lead single Boy With Luv (ft Halsey) narrowly missed a top 10 entry, coming in at number […]

Why I’m beginning to warm to Netflix

After a rocky start with Netflix, I’m now coming round to it. I started subscribing to the online service in order to watch Okja, the Netflix-only feature film by director Bong Joon-ho. Although that particular experience was a big disappointment, I continued the subscription in case I was tempted by any of the other movies […]

Book review: Hwang Sok-yong – At Dusk

Hwang Sok-yong: At Dusk Translated by Sora Kim-Russell Scribe, 2018, 188pp Originally published as 해질 무렵, Munhakdongne, 2015 What a relief it is when a novel is both thought-provoking and a pleasure to read. Hwang Sok-yong’s At Dusk made me look forward to my daily commute (pretty much the only time I get to read). […]

April events

It’s looking like a slightly quieter month this month, though things have a habit of springing up at the last minute. Look out for events related to the 5th anniversary of the Sewol ferry disaster, of which there are a few in the planning but not yet finalised. Exhibitions Haegue Yang’s Tracing Movement is at […]

Embodiment, Performativity and Subjectivity: The Best of BTS’s Music Award Show Stages

Winning end-of-year music award shows is important for Korean idols and groups as it helps to cement their importance and popularity not only in Korea but across East and South East Asia. This is demonstrated by the fact that MAMA 2018 – one of the biggest music shows – took place across multiple countries with […]

Welcome to LKL v6

Earlier this year, my brain decided that sometime during 2019 it would rebuild the LKL website from the ground up. The rest of me didn’t have a choice in the matter. The decision was made. Then the brain took over completely and started work. I could not control it. Most of the day, and often […]

Book notes: Hwang Jung-eun — I’ll Go On

Hwang Jungeun: I’ll Go On Translated by Emily Yae Won Tilted Axis Press, 2018 Serialised as 소라나나나기, 2012-2013, and published as 계속해보겠습니다, 2014, by Changbi After not really warming to Hwang Jungeun’s One Hundred Shadows, I nevertheless invested in the second translation of her work by Tilted Axis Press firstly because the press deserves our […]

Kingston School of Art and Royal School of Needlework collaborate with Hanbok Advancement Centre

The first stage of an innovative collaboration between the Hanbok Advancement Centre, Kingston School of Art and the Royal School of Needlework had its first public exhibition last week at Kingston University’s Stanley Picker Gallery. The collaboration was the brainchild of Justina Jang, who through Korean British Cultural Exchange shares Korean culture with London and […]

Zadie Xa: A Sojourn Through Saturn and Across the Southern Sea

Browsing the Kingston School of Art and Stanley Picker Gallery websites today for background on their recent exhibition of Korean-inspired fashion and embroidery, I came across something I wasn’t expecting. In a zone of Kingston University’s website called Cold Protein is a series of podcasts of artists’ sound works, conceived to be experienced in specific […]

Seungri’s shame makes it into the FT

It’s not often that you find a K-pop story in the pink pages of the Financial Times. In fact, if you search their site for “BTS” you will simply get a list of articles about the company formerly known as British Telecom. So what brings them to report the ins and outs of Lee Seung-hyun’s, […]