Mudang and minhwa

When we think of pre-modern Korean aesthetics, we think of the restrained tones of Koryo celadon, of the austere white of Choson porcelain, the subdued tones of Chong Son’s landscape paintings. But, as Charlotte Horlyck reminded us in her introduction to the informative day of decorative arts and folk customs at SOAS, that is only […]

Bae Jungmi at Lapkoff Fine Art

A press release just received about an exhibition now on: Lapkoff Fine Art announces the opening of its new art exhibition, Jungmi Bae: Recent Works. The exhibition will take place from February 20th to March 1st at 17 Seymour Place in Marylebone and is open each day from noon until 6pm. The oil paintings on […]

A new variation on a familiar pun

We all groan when we come across yet another pun involving the Republic of Korea’s capital city. Maybe I should get out more, but yesterday was the first time I had come across the Mart » 마트 » Mate pun. So, welcome Seoul Mate: not a London Korean dating agency but the latest Korean food […]

Cambridge-based Man U fan wins trip to Seoul

Celebrating the big supporter base in Korea for England’s most successful football team, the Seoul Metropolitan Government last weekend gave away a trip for two to Seoul in a lottery drawn at half time during the Manchester United game against Blackburn Rovers on 21 February. The legendary Bobby Charlton was there to witness the draw, […]

An introduction to Hangeul – part 1

By Matthew Jackson. I heard a few years ago there was a plan to make Hangeul1 Korea’s National Treasure No.1. Given that there are a number of candidates for this position, I was puzzled, although aware that Hangeul’s technical merits are not disputed in the world of linguistics. John Man, for example, in his book […]

Nom Nom Nom gets DVD release

Kim Ji-woon’s western is finally getting a Region 3 release. A first press limited edition hits the websites on March 11, with not only the international cut (at 129 minutes) but the Korean theatrical cut as well – which comes in at 6 minutes longer. One of the differences between the versions is the greater […]

Francesca Cho in Vogue

February’s edition of Vogue Korea has a 6-page feature on the studio space occupied by Korean artists around the world. Francesca Cho is the artist featured for London. Cho, who stepped down from leading the UK Korean Artists Association at the start of this year, is based at Palace Wharf studios in Fulham. She’s been […]

Love and loathing: This isn’t Romance

It was a good time to launch a play called “This isn’t Romance”. Helium-filled red valentine’s day hearts floated from the balcony of the Soho Theatre, encouraging the passing trade. But people turning up on the Friday night (its second night) expecting to buy tickets were disappointed. It was a sell-out performance, and deserved to […]

The BKVA annual report 2008

With the kind permission of Colonel GM Gadd OBE, National Chairman of the British Korean Veterans Association, we reproduce here the annual report of the BKVA’s activities, as presented to the annual general meeting of the Anglo-Korean Society last week. CHAIRMAN’S REPORT TO THE ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING OF THE ANGLO-KOREAN SOCIETY HELD AT THE KOREAN […]

President’s Last Bang gets uncensored DVD release

Im Sang-soo’s controversial black comedy receives a UK DVD release this month, with four minutes of documentary footage, excised by the censors, restored to the cut. Based on the true story of the events leading up to and immediately following the 1979 assassination of South Korean President Park Chung-hee, the controversial satirical black comedy The […]

Sandglass the best TV drama ever?

It’s official: Sandglass (모래시계) is the best Korean Drama since 1980. And maybe that qualifies it as the best Korean TV drama ever, but I’m sure there are knowledgeable people out there who will cite a gem from the 70s. Not only was it voted best Drama by those in the know – “20 star […]

Who’s Who Two

You take your eye off the ball for a couple of months, and everything changes. A while ago, I wrote an article for The East newspaper entitled Who’s Who in the Korean Blogosphere highlighting, in the limited space available, some of the top K-blogs out there. It generated a certain amount of comment, the gist […]

Lord Alton and Baroness Cox return from Pyongyang

Press release dated 7 February UK PARLIAMENTARIANS RETURN FROM NORTH KOREA CALLING FOR US TO END HOSTILITIES British Parliamentarians Lord David Alton and Baroness Caroline Cox have returned today from a five day visit to North Korea and are calling on the new Obama administration to bring about a formal cessation of hostilities and normalisation […]

Surprise and a sense of fun: the UK’s gateway to Korean culture

Jennifer Barclay visits the Korean Cultural Centre on its first birthday, experiences Choi Jeong-hwa’s exhibition, and meets the KCC’s director, Kyuhak Choi. It’s been a few months since I visited the Korean Cultural Centre, so I’m pleasantly surprised to be surprised by it again. I arrive to find stern armed guards in helmets staring at […]