Biggest Ceramics Expo Ever Shows How Art Evolved

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Biggest Ceramics Expo Ever Shows How Art Evolved

The World Ceramic Exposition 2001 Korea will run from Aug. 10 through Oct. 28 in the Kyonggi Province "ceramics belt." Sponsored in part by the Ministry of Tourism and Culture, the event will be held in Kwangju, Ichon and Yoju, three cities within the belt from where 60 percent of the country's ceramics output originates.

The biggest international ceramics event yet held, the exposition will bring together a diversity of ceramics. It will include aboriginal pottery, high-tech porcelains and onggi (also onngi), a dark brown glazed pottery that originated with Korean potters kidnapped and taken to Japan during the Japanese invasions of the mid-Choson period and still produced by their descendants.

The event is divided into seven sections. In "The World Ceramic Biennale" and "World Ceramic Heritages," the organizers have prepared a display of ceramic masterpieces from the world's leading museums. Ceramics from the East include Neolithic earthenware and porcelain. Those from the West range from prehistoric to modern forms of pottery.

The festival also dedicates a special section to "Northeast Asian Ceramic Interchange," which celebrates the flows of influence and exchange among Korea, China and Japan. More than 200 ceramic works from 30 top museums around the world portray how intercultural exchange in East Asia has influenced the development of ceramics in the region..

In the "World Contemporary Ceramics" section, there will be a retrospective exhibition of the works of 38 potters who were leaders in the field of 20th century ceramics. Featuring renowned artists such as Jun Kaneko, Marylin Levine and Yao Yongkang, the section focuses on international trends in contemporary ceramic arts. In a similar context, "Korean Contemporary Ceramics" will be showcased at the Chosun Royal Kiln Museum in Kwangju. Both practical items and non-functional sculptural objects illustrate the dramatic changes that took place in Korean ceramics from the 1960s on.

Antique celadon pieces from the Koyro dynasty and porcelain from the Choson dynasty will be on display in "Korean Traditional Ceramics," and world-wide aboriginal pottery in the "Onngi Exhibition."

Special events and thematic performances will be held through the exposition. "Ceramic Film," for example, is an offering of documentary films on the making of ceramics, and events such as "Mud Festival," "Clay Olympics" and "DIY Ceramics" will allow visitors to gain a hands-on experience of pottery making.

For more information, call Jason Tan at 031-237-8011 (English service available) or visit www.worldceramic.or.kr.



by Park Soo-mee

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