"Rene Magritte - Empire of Dreams": Seoul Museum of Art will have the first retrospective of the Belgian master with an exhibition that includes over 70 oil paintings, 50 gouaches (opaque watercolor paintings), drawings and prints as well as 150 photographs and documents, offering a chance to appreciate Magritte`s original, more representative approach to the surrealism. The show has brought "The Dominion of Light" and "The Art of Conversation" (1950) as well as "The Man in the Bowler Hat" (1964) and "Good Faith" (1964-65) from his best-known series of uniform and stiff-looking figures wearing bowler hats often sported by Magritte, who gave new meanings to the familiar playing with ordinary objects found in everyday lives in a variety of techniques and styles. The exhibition runs through April 1 at Seoul Museum of Art, located near City Hall Station, Subway Line No. 1 and 2. Closed on Mondays. For details, visit www.renemagritte.co.kr
"Our Magic Hours_Europe Contemporary Art": Arario Gallery brought six European artists to take the pulse of European contemporary art, beautifully demonstrating how they reflect the present from the past, and how they materialize their visions and structures into artworks, mostly installations.
All the artists question our senses, such as time and light, in their own ways. Swiss visionary Ugo Rondinone takes a painfully romantic approach to the sense of time while Hans Op de Beeck grabs us back to the past with a smart installation.
The exhibition runs through March 11 at Arario Gallery in Cheonan-si, South Chungcheong Province. For details, visit www.arariogallery.co.kr
"Paik Nam-june and His Fluxus Friends": To commemorate the first anniversary of the death of Paik Nam-june (1932-2006), an exhibition shows the works of the pioneer of video art as well as those of Fluxus movement members.
Texts and photographs document how his artworks evolved into his well-known works such as "Good Morning, Mr. Orwell" (1984) and "Wrap Around the World" (1988). Paintings and drawings related to video art are also included.
The exhibit also offers account on Fluxus, an avant-garde and experimental movement in the 1960s with works of fellow members such as George Maciunas, John Cage, Dick Higgins and Alison Knowles.
The exhibition runs through March 18 at Gallery Ssamzie, located near Anguk Station, Subway Line No. 3. For details, visit www.ssamziegil.com
"Western Style Courtesy of Space": An exhibition devoted to landscape photography, or more specifically photographs of space, urges viewers to take the time to actually look at the works. There are such unfamiliar details embedded in fleetingly familiar scenes as five photographers delve into the ambivalence of space. Lee Yoon-jean serenely gazes at the objects from an odd point making you want to reach out and touch them while Kim Sang-gil and Kim Do-gyun discover surrealistic feelings within common spaces.
The exhibition runs through April 1 at Daelim Contemporary Art Museum, located near Gyeongbokgung Station, Subway Line No. 3. For details, visit www.daelimmuseum.org
"Swallow the Shadow": Chun Sung-myung captures actions and situations from everyday lives and makes them part of his own story, turning them into something unfamiliar. His black, white and grey colored installation sculptures - huge eyed, bald and some even smeared with blood - are reflections of himself yet are eerily surreal and often theatrical and literary.
In his upcoming solo exhibition the artist communicates physical or psychological wounds, which he deems are inevitable and at the same time are bound to be overcome not by hiding but by bringing them out into the open. The exhibition runs through March 10 at Gallery Sun Contemporary, located near Anguk Station, Subway Line No. 3. For details, visit www.suncontemporary.com
"2007 Korean Contemporary Photography Spectrum Exhibition-The Body/ Human Body": Trunk Gallery, which has been devoted to promote local photography, has organized a show that presents the works of five photographers, each telling different stories on the flesh. Gu Bon-chang took pictures of human bodies and sewed the images for the series "In the Beginning," portraying the physical beauty and the repression from the society, while Kim Joon`s "Tattoo You" series uses the bodies as a canvas and mocks the society with tattoos. The exhibition runs through tomorrow at Trunk Gallery, located near Anguk Station, Subway Line No. 3. For details, call (02) 3210-1233.
"Bernard Faucon Vintage Print": A total of 22 vintage prints of French photographer Bernard Faucon (1950- ), one of the pioneers of constructed photography, are on display. Faucon questioned what is real and what we believe to be real, taking a step beyond distorting reality and paved the way for the style, often called "mise en scene" photography or photographs manipulated to produce surreal effects. The exhibition runs through March 18 at Gallery Kong, located near Anguk Station, Subway Line No. 3. Closed on Mondays. For details, visit www.gallerykong.com
"Group Show Part II: Hye Rim Lee, Kyung Jeon, Hideaki Kawashima, and YP": Four Asian artists based in New Zealand, the United States, Japan and Korea shows theirs in forms of characters or iconic figures in different genres, demonstrating the diversity of cultures and genres, through paintings, prints and installations. New Zealand-based Korean Lee works on diaspora and femininity represented through a bunny named "Toki," a mixture of Betty Boop and Playboy Bunny. Jeon`s small characters of Asian boys and girls are "honest reflections" of herself, telling "psychological narratives" that reveal her own thoughts, desires, and insecurities. YP겝s kitsch, anatomically unbalanced characters have eyes half the size of face are deliberately blank so that you cannot tell whether they are good or evil. Kawashima`s mysterious wide-eyed faces fill up the canvases with flowing white tresses expresses his own need to free himself from restrictions and limits set by society. The exhibition runs through March 18 at Kukje Gallery, located near Anguk Station, Subway Line No. 3. For details, visit www.kukjegallery.com
"Maik Wolf": Up and coming artist Maik Wolf crosses boundary between reality and the surreal, and rediscover reality with his photographs transfromed into meaningful paintings. He adds layers of not only pigments but also information and meanings, that leaves a lot to intepret and encompass conflicting values. The exhibition runs through March 10 at Michael Schultz Gallery Seoul, located near Cheongdam-dong crossroads, located near Cheongdam Station, Subway Line No. 7. For details, visit www.schultzgallery.co.kr
"New Acquisitions 2006": The National Museum of Contemporary Art, Korea unveiled its newly acquired collection of over 300 modern and contemporary pieces of art by over 120 artists. This year`s collection includes relatively underappreciated genres such as photography, crafts, media installation and design, as well as calligraphy, paintings and sculptures, as an effort to balance out its collected works, a total of 5,935.
The exhibition runs through April 1 at Museum of Contemporary Art, Korea, in Gwacheon, Gyeonggi Province. There are shuttle buses from Exit 4, Seoul Grand Park Station, Subway Line No. 4 every 20 minutes. Closed on Mondays. Detailed accounts for the collection are offered at 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays. For details, visit www.moca.go.kr
"Yoon Youngseok: The Realm of 3.5 Dimension": Yoon has constantly sought ways to create an ambiguous realm, a universe of his own in somewhere between three and four dimensions, infusing the relativity of time into his artworks. At the same time he making us doubt if what we see, feel and experience are actually accurate, mocking the senses with his sculptures and installations.
The exhibition runs through April 22 at Rodin Gallery, located near City Hall Station, Subway Line No. 1 and 2. Closed on Mondays. A talk with the artist is scheduled for March 10 at 2 p.m. For details, visit www.rodingallery.org
"Park Hee-sun": To mark the 10th anniversary of the death of Park (1956-1997), an exhibition sheds new light on the sculptor who explored the relationship between history and politics of Korea with conceptual works. He integrated heterogeneous materials, such as wood and bronze, and different elements into an amalgamated objet, to illustrate the political turmoil of his country, reflecting his wishes to dissolve complicated issues surrounding the peninsula, and probably himself. The exhibition runs through April 26 at Kim Chong Young Sculpture Museum in Pyeongchang-dong. Closed on Mondays. For details, visit www.kimchongyung.org
"Reconstructing Masterpieces": Twenty local artists have reinterpreted classic art into their own contemporary versions of paintings, sculptures and installations. The Venus de Milo gets a face lift in Debbie Han`s drawing "Venus" and a breast augmentation in Lee Byung-ho`s sculpture "Volume Up Venus." Images of Marilyn Monroe, often featured in the works of Andy Warhol, and traditional Korean landscape paintings are digitalized and reborn by Lee Jung Seung-won and Lee Mi-nam.
The exhibition runs through May 20 at the Savina Museum of Contemporary Art, located near Anguk Station, Subway Line No. 3. For details, visit www.savinamuseum.com
"MESH": An exhibition with works by Ron Saunders, Yi Joungmin, and Jin Shiu. This exhibition uses "Fictions," a collection of short stories by Jorge Luis Borges, as a springboard to investigate the relationship between fact and fiction, and where these concepts overlap. Artworks on display will include paintings, installations, video and mixed media. The exhibition runs through March 24 at Gallery Jung Mi So in Hyehwa-dong. Hyehwa Station, Subway Line No. 4, Exit 2. For more information, visit www.galleryjungmiso.com or e-mail email@example.com There will be a roundtable discussion today at 2 p.m. in the gallery`s auditorium. Minimal translation between Korean and English will be provided.
"Louvre Museum Exhibit: le paysage dans la peinture occidentale du XVIe au XIXe siecle": To celebrate the 120th anniversary of diplomatic ties between France and Korea, Louvre Museum and National Museum of Korea have joined hands to showcase the Paris museum`s collection in Seoul for the first time. A total of 70 pieces that chronicles 400 years of Western paintings will be offered on view for public. Francois Boucher`s "Diane sortant du bain," Eugene Delacroix`s "Medee furieuse," Francisco Jose de Goya Y Lucientes` "Portrait de Marie-Anne de Waldstein" and Jean-Francois Millet`s "Les Botteleurs de foin" will be included in the exhibit. children`s educational sessions will be offered during the exhibition. The exhibition will run through March 18, 2007. Closed on Mondays. For details, visit www.museum.go.kr
"All Shook Up": Korean version of a Broadway jukebox musical, featuring the music of the classic rock star Elvis Presley, is currently being staged at Chungmu Art Hall. The original piece was created by Joe DiPietro, also producer of a hit musical " I Love You"
The musical takes place in a small town in America in mid 1950s and tells the story of Natalie, a young girl who dreams of leaving her town and Chad, a charismatic rock and roll player who visits Natalie`s town. Natalie, a mechanic, instantly falls in love with Chad, a black-jacketed, rock and roll loving motorcyclist but pretends she doesn`t as he falls for another girl. Natalie then disguise herself as a cool guy named "Ed" to be near to Chad. The musical runs through April 22. Tickets are 40,000 won to 80,000 won. Chungmu Art Hall is located near Exit 9, Sindang Station on Subway Line 6. For more information, call 1588-5212.
"Mamma Mia": The best musical of 2006 as chosen by Korean online voters last year greets fans at Sungnam Arts Center, from this weekend. The smash hit, based on the music of Abba, features one of Korea`s musical stars Choi Jung-won and Yi Tae-won as Donna and Lee Jung-mi as Sophie. Tickets are 40,000 won to 110,000 won. For more information and to reserve tickets, visit www.mamma-mia.co.kr or call 1588-7890.
"Hedwig And The Angry Inch": Cho Seung-woo returns to the rock musical which is currently on at SH Club in Daehangno. It runs through May 13. The 2006 version of the musical has been hitting the stage at Daehangno since last October, featuring new stars Lee Seok-jun and Song Yong-jin as Hedwig. The show recently celebrated its 500th performance. Cho is to perform `Hedwig` four times a week starting on March 30 until the last show on May 13. Tickets are 35,000 and 40,000 won. Twenty percent discount is offered for Wednesday afternoon tickets. For further information, call (02) 3485-8700 or visit www.hedwig.co.kr
"I DO I DO": The Korean version of the Broadway musical is currently on the stage at the KT & G Sangsang Art Hall located at Samsung-dong, southern Seoul. Written by Harvey Schumidt and Tom Jones, authors of hit-musical "Fantasticks," the musical centers on the story of marriage presented by only two actors who take roles of a wife and a husband. The musical begins with the wedding day of Michael and Agnes. It then tells of their 50 years of marriage that had troubles, laughter and reminiscence. The star of the smash musical "Mamma Mia," Park Hae-mi takes the role of Agnes, a full-time homemaker, while Lee Byung-joon, a longtime musical actor, plays Michael, an ambitious writer. Tickets are 40,000 won to 70,000 won. Exit 2, Samsung Station, Subway Line No. 2. Call (02) 334-5211 for more information.
"Grease": A Korean-version of the Broadway musical featuring the themes of love, friendship, rebellion and sexual exploration during adolescence. It is currently on at the Dongsoong Arts Center in Daehangno, downtown Seoul. The musical starts with students returning after summer vacation. The boys - Danny Zuko, Kenickie, Roger, Sonny LaTierri and Doody - are members of the "Burger Palace Boys." The girls form the "Pink Ladies" (Betty Rizzo, Jan, Marty and Frenchy). Danny tells about a girl he met over the summer, Sandy, but he downplays their relationship as a fling when she approaches him at school. Heartbroken, Sandy tries to get him back by recalling the happy moments in the well-known score "Summer Nights." The musical features singer Park Hye-kyung and comedian Hong Rok-gi as Kenickie and Rizzo. Tickets are 35,000 won to 55,000 won. Exit No.1, Hyehwa Station on Subway Line No. 4. For more information call 1588-5212 or visit www.odmusical.com
"Claw of An Angel": Versatile actor Yoo Jun-sang returns to the stage with the homegrown musical "Claw of Angel" which will be presented from Jan. 23 until March 4 at Towol Theater in the Seoul Arts Center. Yoo`s new musical took its motivation from a mythical story of angels believed to have suffered a great deal of pain by pulling out their toenails not to become the devil. Already described in the title, the musical shows this ambivalence of human nature and the suffering human beings with the story of Ee-du, a violent gangster who accidentally kills his innocent, good spirited twin brother Il-du in the southern port city of Yeosu some 20 years ago. Tickets are 35,000 won to 60,000 won. For more information, call (02) 764-8760 or visit www.aga99.co.kr
"Lion King": Japan`s Shiki Theatre Company, one of the world`s most renowned musical troupes, is playing Walt Disney`s musical adaptation of "The Lion King" at the Charlotte Theater in Jamsil, southeastern Seoul. The winner of the Tony Award`s "Best Musical" will also mark the opening of the the nation`s first "musical only" venue at the Lotte Hotel World. Tickets are priced 35,000 won to 90,000 won. Exit No. 3, Jamsil Station on Subway Line No. 2. For details, call (02) 411-5083.
"Royal Dream of the Moon": A period drama musical hits the stage on March 15 through 22 at the Opera House of the Seoul Arts Center, southern Seoul. Taking their theme from the life and achievements of King Jeongjo of the Joseon Dynasty, the musical portrays the personal agony of the king who lost his father "Sadoseja," at the hands of his own grandfather, King Youngjo, who was facing political opposition at that time. The musical tries to look deeper inside and show how he suffered from the death of his own father and tried to console his broken heart through a fictional figure, Jangdeok. Tickets are 20,000 won to 60,000 won. For more information, visit www.dreaming.or.kr
"Kyungsook, Kyungsook`s Father": Jo Jae-hyun, a top rated actor is currently playing egocentric "Abe (father)" at hit-drama "Kyungsook, Kyungsook`s Father," currently on at the Dongsoong Art Center in Daehangro. Produced by Park Geun-hyung, the drama has won a number of critic`s award last year. Set in a remote village during the Korean War (1950-53), the drama depicts a tragic but heart wrenching story of a daughter and her freethinking father. The drama runs through March 25. Tickets are 30,000 won for adults and 15,000 won for students. Call (02) 741-3391 for more information.
"Doubt": Kim Hye-ja, Korea`s high-profile actress returns to the stage with an experienmental play "Doubt," at Hakjeon Blue Theater in Daehangno, downtown Seoul, on Feb. 23 through May 20. The experienmental play takes place in 1964 in a Catholic junior high school in the Bronx. Kim plays Sister Aloysius, "a formidable nun" who was married before she became a sister and who runs the place. The play, written by American playwright John Patrick Shanley, has won four 2005 Tony Awards including Best Play and Best Writer. Tickets are priced 25,000 won to 50,000 won. The venue is located near Hyehwa station, Subway Line No. 4, Exit 1. For further information, call (02)764-5262.
"Liar": A Korean rendition of British playwright Ray Cooney`s play "Run for Your Wife," about a taxi driver named John Smith who is married to Mary and Barbara. With the help of a neighbor, he tries to keep two suspicious police detectives from finding out his secret, while keeping his two wives from finding out about each other. The two-act farce has been performed more than 164 times, selling more than 37,000 tickets only for this year. Currently, the play is being performed at Dongyang Theater in Shinsa-dong, southern Seoul. Tickets are 20,000 won and 25,000 won. Exit No. 2, Shinsa Station, Subway No.3. For more information, call (02) 515-6510.
"The Good": A B-boy performance featuring scratch DJ Wrecks and Yamakasi, a group of practitioners who perform flips and tricks. The experienmental show combines Korean traditional music, contemporary western music and beats to give interesting variations of the western genre. The performance hits the stage on Feb. 6 to March 4 at MELON-AX, Five minutes walk from exit No.2, Gwangnaru Station, Subway No.5. Tickets are 35,000 won to 45,000 won. For more information call (02) 501-7888.
"B-Boy Korea": Nonverbal break dance show is currently on stage at the Star Six Chongdong Art Hall in Jeong-dong, downtown Seoul. Choreographed by Korea`s best b-boy, "poppin Hyunjun" and directed by actor-turned-producer Song Seung-hwan of PMC Production. Combining traditional Korean music or gukak and Western movements, the performance tries to differentiate Korean b-boying from Western culture. The venue is located near Seodaemun Station, Subway Line No. 5, Exit 5. Tickets are priced at 40,000 won and 50,000 won. There is no performance on Mondays. For more information call (02) 739-8288 or visit www.i-pmc.co.kr
"Quidam": The acclaimed show presented by world-famous Canadian circus troupe Cirque du Soleil, hits the stage on March 29 at Jamsil Sports Complex, southeastern Seoul. With a cast of 54 performers, the show involves breathtaking circus acrobatics such as juggling, contortionists and aerial acrobatics, featuring an inspirational character "Quidam" which leads audiences to an unknown, mythical but adventurous world. Quidam, Latin for anonymous passerby, describes a mysterious character in an alienated world. The show, led by the gothic character, was created in 1996, inspired by the people of New York City - walking past each other with their heads down, not communicating. Tickets are 55,000 won to 200,000 won.
For more information and ticket reservation visit www.quidam2007.co.kr or call 1544-1555 or 1588-7890. The show runs for two and half hours. Children aged under five are advised not to attend the show. The performance runs from March 29 to June 3.
"Dresdner Philharmonie & Dresdner Kreuzchor": The Dresdner Philharmonie (Dresden Philharmonic), for which Brahms, Dvorak and Tchaikovsky served as music director, will perform Mozart`s "Requiem" at the Seoul Arts Center Concert Hall today, which will be followed by the Dresdner Kreuzchor boys` choir`s performance of the entire Matthew Passion by Bach tomorrow in the same venue. Tickets are 30,000 to 200,000 won. Exit No. 5, Nambu Bus Terminal Station on Subway Line No. 3. For further information, call (02) 599-5743.
"Claude Bolling Big Band Concert": The world famous French jazz pianist, composer, arranger and conductor will give a concert with his band at the Sejong Center for the Performing Arts on March 24. Bolling, 76, who virtually defined the concept of jazz-classical crossover with his groundbreaking album "Suite for Flute and Jazz Piano" has collaborated with a variety of accomplished artists including cellist Yo-Yo Ma and flutist Jean-Pierre Rampaul. Tickets are from 30,000 to 100,000 won. Exit No. 8, Gwanghwamun Station on Subway Line No. 5. For more information, call (02) 751-9609.
"Kiri Te Kanawa recital": The highly adored diva well-known for her powerful stage presence with a breathtaking voice will play her first recital at the Seoul Arts Center Concert Hall on March 13. The New Zealand-born soprano had won the major vocal prizes available in the South Pacific, and had also started her recording career by the time she was 20. Tickets are 50,000 won to 160,000 won. Exit No. 5, Nambu Bus Terminal Station on Subway Line No. 3. For more information, call (02) 541-6234.
"Muse Live in Seoul 2007": The British modern rock band will give their first concert here at the Jamsil Gymnasium, southeastern Seoul, on March 7. Best known for their highly dynamic, unusual live performances, last year`s MTV European Music Video Award-winning band debuted in 1999 with the album "Showbiz." Since then, the three-Matthew Bellamy, Dominic Howard and Chris Wolstenholme-have established a distinctly aggressive hard rock sound. Tickets range from 77,000 won to 99,000 won. Exit No. 6, Sports Complex Station on Subway Line No. 2. For more information, call (02) 3141-3488.
"World Fusion Jazz Festival": World-class jazz musicians are coming to Seoul to perform at Songnam Arts Center on March 6 and 7 and Sejong Center for the Performing Arts on March 7 and 8. This year`s opener will be Michel Camilo and his band and blues artists Larry Carlton and Robben Ford. Tickets are from 10,000 won to 99,000 won for concerts at the Songnam Arts Center and from 30,000 won to 120,000 won for those at the Sejong Center. Exit No. 3, Imae Station on Bundang Subway Line (Songnam) Exit No. 8, Gwanghwamun Station on Subway Line No. 5 (Sejong). For more information, call (02) 720-8500.
"Marcus Miller in Seoul": Miller, one of the most influential bass players of all-time, will be performing at the Seoul Arts Center Concert Hall on March 7, which will be his first solo concert in the country. Born in Brooklyn in 1959, he won a Grammy for Best Contemporary Jazz Album in 2001 for his solo album "M2." He is also a prolific film and TV composer, scoring such movies as "House Party" and "Boomerang" as well as Chris Rock`s hit sitcom "Everybody Hates Chris." Tickets are 44,000 won to 110,000 won. Exit No. 5, Nambu Bus Terminal Station on Subway Line No. 3. For further information, call (02) 541-6234.