Han Sang-hee and the Art of Happiness

Matthew Jackson reviews “Virgin Snow” – the first film to be screened at the KCC, Tuesday 26 February The screening of Virgin Snow at the new Korean Cultural Centre was the inaugural session in its programme of monthly film nights, and I felt it would be well worth attending for that reason alone. From the […]

Americans in Pyongyang

With typically bad timing my travel arrangements didn’t work out. I caught the Star-Spangled Banner and the first movement of the New World Symphony in the car on the way to the airport, but missed the North Korean anthem which opened the broadcast, and of course all the encores — including the tearful Arirang (by […]

Words of inspiration

NO RIVER TO CROSS: Trusting the Enlightenment that’s Always Right There Zen Master Daehaeng Wisdom Publications, Boston US$14.95 The title refers to the idea that you don’t have to make a grand pilgrimage to find your Buddha nature, as it’s already inside you, and this approachable book offers plenty of inspiring thoughts. It starts with […]

A visit to the Whanki Museum (환기 미술관)

The Korea Tourist Office website advises us that Kim Hwan-gi (1913-1974) (known internationally as Kim Whanki — and he signs his paintings just plain “Whanki”) “was Korea’s top artist of modernism”. It is therefore frustrating that when you go into the Tourist Information Offices in Insadong no-one has heard of him, still less of the […]

The KCC DVD library

I popped round to the Korean Cultural Centre a couple of weeks ago to check on how things were going1. I went downstairs to register for the library, and was greeted by this encouraging sight: It’s some of the DVDs that are being catalogued and which will be available for viewing. That big box at […]

2008 Travel diary day 5: Buamdong and home

Insadong, Seoul, Tuesday 19 February: a final browse in Insadong before catching the shuttle bus to the Whanki Museum. After which a quick browse around Bukchon and Samcheong-dong and it was time to head for the aiport. I pick up the shuttle bus at the Koreana hotel and pretty soon I’m in Incheon, where the […]

Two flower painters at I-MYU

FORGET ME NOT: Works by Yeon Soo Ha and Bon-A Koo 1 February — 2 March 2008, I-MYU Gallery, 23 Charlotte Road EC2A 3PB Tuesday-Saturday 12-6pm or by appointment The work of Ha Yeonsoo and Koo Bona currently on show at I-MYU both have nature as their subject, but almost could not be further apart […]

2008 Travel diary day 4: meetups in Seoul

Nampodong, Busan, Monday morning 18 February: a quick stroll around the Jagalchi fish market before I catch the subway to Busan Station and buy a ticket for the KTX back to Seoul. As we pass through Milyang, setting for Secret Sunshine, I feel compelled to take a photo. On arriving in Seoul, a quick bag […]

2008 Travel diary day 3: Busan

Insadong, Seoul, Sunday morning 17 February: an early start for the 9:05 KTX to Busan. I am met at the other end by Nam-hee and Min, who have taken it upon themselves to show me round. First, a foaming Samgyetang in Seoul Samgyetang in the Nampodong area. I reckognise the environs from a previous stay […]

We look forward to lunchtime

An assessment of “Good Morning, Mr Paik Nam June” Korean Cultural Centre, UK, 1 Feb – 2 Mar, Mon-Fri 9:30 – 5:30 It must be a very attractive prospect to be offered the job of curating a prestigious exhibition at the high-profile launch of a cultural centre. Having a blank canvas to work on certainly […]

The London Korean Links Facebook Group

Hi all I’ve recently set up an LKL Facebook group. I’m not entirely sure what I’m going to do with it, but obviously it’s a place where you can meet other people who are LKL readers. One thing I will be using it for, though, is to send out emails with notifications of Korea-related events […]

Choi Young-rim at the Deoksu palace

In the grounds of the Deoksugung in downtown Seoul is an outpost of the National Museum of Contemporary Art. Maybe your average sightseer interested in palace architecture is not interested in popping in to see some paintings. But the exhibition currently showing is well worth a visit. The exhibition showcases two artists — one Japanese, […]

Namdaemun before, during and after

First, some pictures of Namdaemun as it used to be: In 1890; In 1904-6; In 1906-7. The YouTube Namdaemun Then and Now group contains loads of more recent, pre-fire, images. Here’s a couple of samples: Next, a YouTube (from MBC) of the fire itself: Some spectacular stills of the fire are on pwalks’ flickr page […]