2012 Travel Diary 9: Yun Isang — Victim of the Cold War

Tongyeong, Gyeongsangnam-do, Monday 26 March 2012. For most big Korean cultural events there’s a glossy brochure with a welcome message from various officials and dignitaries. And for the most important events you might expect a welcome message from the Minister of Culture. It is a measure of the sensitivity of the Tongyeong International Music Festival’s […]

2012 Travel Diary 8: Yun Isang, Sancheong and Tongyeong

Tongyeong, Gyeongsangnam-do, Monday 26 March 2012. The day has been devoted mainly to exploring some of the Joseon dynasty naval history in which Tongyeong played its part. But we’re also in Tongyeong to attend the Tongyeong International Music Festival, focusing on concerts which have music by Tongyeong’s most famous musical son, composer Yun Isang. In […]

2012 Travel Diary 6: Tongyeong harbour

Tongyeong, Gyeongsangnam-do, Monday 26 March 2012. It’s another beautiful, crisp spring morning. The sea is calm, the sky is cloudless, but the temperature out of the sun is not far above freezing. The light is perfect for a few early photographs of the view from the hotel and from its waterside terrace, though it’s tricky […]

2012 Travel Diary 5: the Trip to Tongyeong

Seoul, Sunday 25 March 2012. Seoul’s Express Bus terminal is rather confusing. Even my Korean companion is struggling to figure out where to buy the tickets, what the difference is between a standard and a deluxe bus, and where they go from. We eventually work it out, and I’m glad she decided to tag along […]

2012 Travel Diary 3: Bugaksan to Daehakro

Seoul, Saturday 24 March 2012. There’s time to kill before our evening appointment in Daehakro, so we go for a stroll in Samcheong-dong, along with most of the rest of Seoul. It’s 5pm on a pleasant Saturday afternoon, and young couples amble with an charming lack of purpose, getting in your way if you want to […]

Park Kyung-ni’s tomb in Tongyeong

For peope who like to track down literary landmarks, the tomb of Park Kyung-ni, author of the sweeping epic T’oji (Land) can be found on Mireukdo, Tongyeong, just above a memorial hall dedicated to her life and work. And for those who are short of time (like me), and like to tick off a number […]

2012 Travel Diary 1: Dansaekhwa – Korean Monochrome Painting at the Museum of Contemporary Art

Gwacheon, Gyeonggi-do, Saturday 24 March 2012. Whenever I come to Seoul I always try to get to Seoul Grand Park in Gwacheon to visit the National Museum of Contemporary Art. Even if there isn’t a particularly interesting special exhibition on (and that’s rare), their permanent collection is always worth a browse. This time, the special […]

The LKL 2012 Korea Trip – introduction

For the past couple of years my Korea trip has been scheduled for the beginning of May, to coincide with the Sancheong herbal medicine festival and the Jongmyo rituals. This year, I thought I’d try something different, and planned a visit to the Tongyeong International Music Festival. A trip to that port city, location for […]

The LKL 2012 Korea Trip – index

Here is the table of contents for the 2012 LKL Korea trip, subtitled Music, Mugwort and Monochrome: Contents Introduction 12: Yun Isang’s music at TIMF 2012 1: Dansaekhwa – Korean Monochrome Painting at the Museum of Contemporary Art 13: Jeon Hyuck-lim, Magician of Colours 2: Suh Do-ho “Home within Home” at the Leeum 14: Mugwort […]

A big thank you to all those who made my recent Korea trip so special

I’ve just come back from an action-packed 10 days in Korea: contemporary art and Joseon dynasty architecture in Seoul; contemporary music, Joseon dynasty naval prowess and great scenery in Tongyeong; mountain hiking, fine Korean tea-bowls, Koryo dynasty cotton cultivation, Kaya kingdom tombs, one of highest temples in South Korea and much more in Sancheong County. […]

The Seoul Nuclear Security Summit

Trying to stay in Seoul at the time of such a big event as the Nuclear Security Summit meant that some of my preferred hotels were booked solid or had revoked any discounts which might otherwise have been available. But it was interesting seeing the preparations that Seoul had been making, from the security arrangements […]