Archive of art, architecture

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Archive of art, architecture


Hyundai Card Design Library in Gahoe-dong, central Seoul. [JoongAng Ilbo]

While explorers enjoy the Travel Library, design lovers can move on to a calmer, more traditional part of the city - Bukchon in central Seoul.

Hyundai Card’s first library, a forward-thinking venue that archives the designs of the past, present and future, is located in this neighborhood.

Hyundai Card Design Library opened in February last year and has been praised for having the most impressive collection in Korea of design-related books.

The library houses about 11,678 books on art trends that emerged after the foundation of the Bauhaus, the acclaimed art school that started in Germany in 1919.

The collection was selected following the same seven principles as the Travel Library, by renowned curators including critic and Golden Lion winner Justin McGuirk, MOMA curator Paola Antonelli, and architecture and design journalist Alexandra Lange. The organizers say that about 70 percent of the collection has never been seen before in Korea.

In this library, the charm is in the building’s surroundings, as well as its vast collection of design-related books. Managers at Hyundai Card Design Library say the library is a “place to take a stroll.”

The inner walls of the three-story building have windows offering an unhampered view of outside.

The library also has a rare book section, which includes limited editions of art magazines such as the entire Life collection, from 1936 to 2007, as well as Domus, an Italian architecture magazine founded in 1928.

The Hyundai Card Design Library is open from 1 p.m. to 9 p.m. from Tuesdays to Saturdays and from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sundays and public holidays. It is closed on Mondays, New Year’s Day and during the Chuseok holidays.

Access is only available with a Hyundai Card membership, and the same rules and regulations as the Travel Library apply.


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