London Korean Links

Covering things Korean in London and beyond since 2006

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Selected publications

  • Booklist: Art and Design (39 titles)
    • New and upcoming non-fiction titles for 2019

      Unlike my list that attempts to compile upcoming literature and fiction titles, here I’ve had to be selective in what to include, otherwise the length of this post would be unmanageable. Nevertheless I’ve almost certainly missed out some titles that I’d want to have on my bookshelf. I’ve divided the list into seven sections: Literature … [Read More]

      A look back at the 2018 literary year

      A look back at the books and literary events of the year – and a summary of my reading diary. Literature in translation In translated fiction, my reading this year has not managed anywhere near to keep pace with the amount of translations being published. I know I said the same in respect of 2017 … [Read More]

      Exhibition visit: Nick Bonner’s Made in North Korea

      When one thinks of North Korean graphic art, images of strident anti-American propaganda posters spring to mind. Fortunately, and in the current climate of reduced tension on the peninsula, the posters that greeted you in the first room of Nick Bonner’s exhibition at the House of Illustration focused less on stirring up national hatred against … [Read More]

      New books for the summer

      A couple of new books to take with you on your summer break – or, more likely in respect of the first on the list, to adorn your coffee table when you return. First, fulsomely reviewed by Andrew Salmon in Asia Times, comes Inside North Korea by The Guardian‘s architecture and design critic Oliver Wainwright … [Read More]

      Book review: Lee Yil – Dynamics of Expansion and Reduction

      Lee Yil: Dynamics of Expansion and Reduction Selected Writings on Korean Contemporary Art, 1970 – 1996 Initial draft translations: Chung Yeon-shim, Park Eun-ah, Park Sung-ji Final translations: Paul O’Kane, Song Bada Published by AICA (International Association of Art Critics) / Les Presses du Réel, Dijon, France, 2018, 212pp How often do you read the learned … [Read More]

      New and upcoming non-fiction titles for 2018

      Too many books, not enough time to read them, or space to store them. Encouragingly, in a skim of the upcoming publication lists I had no problems finding plenty of books on a wide range of interesting topics. No longer it seems is the reading public (or the publishers’ perception thereof) solely interested in that … [Read More]

      A look back at some of the books of 2016

      To cut to the chase, here are my two books of the year for 2016. For more detail, read on. Literature in translation The world of translated fiction seems to have been dominated by two names this year, one Korean and one British. The Korean name of course is Han Kang. Just as The Vegetarian … [Read More]

      A look back at the books of 2015

      In place of our annual “LKL Awards” post, we look at some of the highlights of 2015 in the area of books, film and music. Apart from the field of literature in translation (and of course I’m talking Han Kang here), there are no clear winners or I haven’t covered enough ground to choose one. … [Read More]

      New book on Korean artefacts in Oxford

      Oxford’s Bodleian Library announces the publication of a new book on historic Korean artefacts in the University’s collections. It accompanies an exhibition which runs 26 August to 26 September 2011 in the Proscholium at the Bodleian Library: Korean Treasures: Rare Books, Manuscripts and Artefacts in the Bodleian Libraries and Museums of Oxford University by Minh … [Read More]

      New books for the Spring

      Three recent publications: First, a new book in the Korean Spirit and Culture series, produced by the aptly named Korean Spirit and Culture Promotion Project. This is their fourth, and is the first of two to explore Fifty Wonders of Korea. This volume covers Culture and Art, while the next one will cover Science and … [Read More]

      Kim Young-na: Modern and Contemporary Art in Korea

      Kim Young-na: Modern and Contemporary Art in Korea (Hollym, 2005) A brief but action-packed overview of twentieth century Korean art history, which can be read alongside Kim’s other book covering the same period, published by Lawrence King. While her Lawrence King book is a collection of essays focusing on particular subject areas, the Hollym book … [Read More]

      Chung Hyung-min: Modern Korean Ink Painting

      (Hollym, 2006) A well-illustrated and easy-to-read book which traces the development of ink painting in the 20th century from its roots in the Chosun dynasty: the famous “court” painter O-won (Jang Seung-eop, 장승업, immortalised in Im Kwon-taek’s Chihwaseon), and the literati style perfected in Kim Jeong-hi (김정희). Chung emphasises the importance of the short-lived (1911-19) … [Read More]

      Kim Youngna: 20th Century Korean Art

      (Lawrence King, 2005) A collection of articles, turned into a book. As I’m neither an art critic nor an art historian I’m going to restrict myself to a chapter-by-chapter summary of the ground covered. A useful overview of colonial period art. Highlights the difficulty of studying & researching the art history of the period, in … [Read More]