2018.1.31 Galleries & Museums
Gallery Hyundai, Jung District
To Feb. 18: The solo exhibition of Kwak Duck-Jun, a Kyoto-based Korean artist, features paintings from his early days. Known for his installations and photography work, this exhibit gives visitors a look at a lesser-known side of the 81-year-old artist. Thirty works created between 1964 and 1969 are now on view.
According to the gallery, Kwak, born and raised in Kyoto during the Japanese colonial rule of Korea, was suddenly stripped of his Japanese nationality and was given Korean immigrant status in 1951 after World War II. He also had to fight tuberculosis for three years.
“I vomited my pain and agony through art,” the artist told reporters earlier this month.
The paintings were created with his unique style.
Admission is free. The gallery is closed on Monday. Go to Anguk Station, line No. 3, exit 1, and walk for 10 minutes.
(02) 2287-3500, www.galleryhyundai.com
D Museum, Yongsan District
To March 4: This exhibition features over 2,700 pieces of furniture and other artistic commodities made of plastic.
The vast range of works celebrates the flexibility of plastic as not only a raw material for practical uses, but also its versatility in art. Over 70 percent of the works on display are products manufactured by Italian design company Kartell, which is a sponsor of the exhibition.
Admission is 8,000 won ($7.44) for adults. D Museum is a 15-minute walk from Hangangjin Station, line No. 6, exit 3. The museum is closed on Mondays.
Seoul Museum, Jongno District
To March 4: The exhibition, inspired by the popular Italian opera “L’elisir d’amore,” features the joy and pain of love and the evolution of relationships as interpreted by the work of 10 local and foreign artists.
Among the participants is Spanish artist Irma Gruenholz, who make small sculptures that depict dramatic scene and photographs them. The exhibits also include the “De-Selfing” series by New-York-based Taiwanese photographer Hsin Wang, who takes pictures of herself and her boyfriend in surrealistic and symbolic ways to tell the painful sides of love. The exhibit also includes the “Tutu Project” by American photographer Bob Carey.
Admission is 9,000 won for adults and includes admission to the other shows going on at the museum, as well as to Seokpajeong, the summer residence of King Gojong’s father, behind the museum. The museum is closed on Mondays. Take buses No. 1020, 1711, 7016, 7018, 7022 or 7212 to the Jahamun Tunnel stop.
(02) 395-0100, www.seoulmuseum.org
Hangaram Design Museum in the Seoul Arts Center, Seocho District
To April 15: The first large-scale retrospective of Alberto Giacometti’s (1901-1966) work in Korea features about 120 pieces from the Swiss artist, including plaster, bronze sculptures, paintings and drawings. The pieces are categorized in the exhibit by who they are modeled after instead of being arranged chronologically.
The exhibition, hosted by the Giacometti Foundation Paris, focuses on the works of the artist made after World War II - the full-length human-figure sculptures standing upright with unnaturally thin bodies like steel wires, as well as human busts with well-defined faces and glaring eyes with melting torsos in contrast.
Among the highlights is the original plaster of the world-famous “Walking Man II,” which hardly ever comes out of the foundation. There are also two versions of the sculpture “Bust of a Man Seated (Lotar III)” facing each other: One is the plaster original, the other is made of bronze.
Admission is 16,000 won for adults.
To get to the Seoul Arts Center, get off at Nambu Bus Terminal Station, line No. 3, exit 4-2 or 5.
(02) -532-4407, https://giacometti.modoo.at
M Contemporary, Gangnam District
To April 15: Though we are quite familiar with the images of pop art, we don’t often get the chance to see the actual works created by the artists.
At the M Contemporary art museum, visitors will get the rare chance to see original silk prints created by five of the world’s most beloved pop artists from decades ago - Roy Lichtenstein, Andy Warhol, Robert Rauschenberg, Keith Haring and Robert Indiana.
The exhibit gives a deeper look into the times in history that gave birth to pop art.
Tickets cost 16,000 won for adults and 12,000 won for students. Get off at Sinnonhyeon Station, line No. 9, exit 5.
(02) 3451-8199, www.m-contemporary.com
CRACKS IN THE CONCRETE
MMCA Gwacheon, Gyeonggi
To April 29: The exhibition features 94 paintings, sculptures, photos, new media and installation works from leading Korean artists in the museum’s collection.
The exhibit takes a look at modern and contemporary art’s quality of making “cracks in our stereotypes, common sense and fixed social orders,” according to the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (MMCA).
The exhibition includes the controversial painting “Beautiful Woman” which is on display to the public for the first time in 26 years. The move came, after prosecutors concluded it was an authentic painting by the late Korean modern artist Chun Kyung-ja (1924-2015) in December, going against allegations made by the artist during her lifetime and her descendants that the painting is a forgery.
Admission is free. Go to Seoul Grand Park Station, line No. 4, exit No. 4 and take the shuttle bus.
(02) 2188-6114, www.mmca.go.kr