Saturday, June 13, 2009

'100 Years of Korean Comics' Exhibition

Here's something that might be fun this weekend - or any weekend over the summer. From last week's Korea Times:
Commemorating the centennial of Korean comic books, or manhwa, South Korea's national art museum will host a massive exhibition featuring some 1,500 pieces by 250 artists beginning this week, according to Yonhap News Agency.

The exhibition, "100 Years of Korean Comics," is the largest event to portray Korean manhwa, displaying rare copies of comic books published in the 1930s and 1940s as well as dozens of manhwa-inspired artworks by contemporary artists, the National Museum of Contemporary Art said in a press release.
A Joongang Ilbo article continues:
According to the museum, this is the biggest exhibition on the 100-year-long history of Korean manhwa, with 1,500 pieces from 250 artists. The exhibit includes rare copies of comic books published in the 1930s and 1940s and 60 pieces of manhwa-inspired artworks by contemporary artists.

Manhwa was once regarded as an evil distraction from study, and in the 1970s, copies of the comic books were burned in schools nationwide.
Actually, as Mark Russell notes in the chapter about Korean comics his book 'Pop Goes Korea,' "In 1967 the humorless Park regime listed comics as one of the six evils in Korean society." Things, thankfully, have improved since then. The Joongang Ilbo article continues:
In the exhibition, the history of manhwa is presented in three sections. The first showcases the history of Korean manhwa, beginning with the first satirical cartoon, which was published on June 2, 1909, in the Daehan Minbo, one of Korea’s first newspapers. This section also displays cartoons that have been uploaded to the Internet by cartoon artists in a growing trend the industry believes is the future of the genre.[...]

The exhibition runs from June 3 to Aug. 23 at the National Museum of Contemporary Art, Gwacheon, Gyeonggi. Go to Seoul Grand Park Station, line No. 4, exit 4. From there, you can take a free shuttle bus to the museum. Admission is 3,000 won ($2.41) for adults; a family ticket for two adults and one child is also available for 8,000 won. For more information, visit or call (02) 2188-6232.
(Crossposted at Hub of Sparkle)


kissmykimchi said...

Thanks for the tip. I've got sunday plans now.

nb said...

Ever considered this?