Joseon period art to tour three U.S. cities

By Korea Herald
  • Published : Feb 20, 2014 - 19:22
  • Updated : Feb 20, 2014 - 19:22
Some of the finest examples of Korean art during the Joseon era will go on display in Philadelphia next month, as part of a three-city traveling exhibition in the United States.

Titled “Treasures from Korea: Arts and Culture of the Joseon Dynasty (1392-1910),” the exhibition will be held at the Philadelphia Museum of Art from March 2 till May 26.

“The Philadelphia exhibition is, for us, just as important as the one taking place now at New York’s Metropolitan Museum,” said Kim Young-na, head of the National Museum of Korea. Most of the objects to be displayed in the exhibition are drawn from her museum.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art, the largest museum in the United States, is currently holding a large-scale exhibition on the Silla Kingdom (B.C. 57-A.D. 935). It opened in November last year and is to close on Feb. 23.

The upcoming Joseon art exhibition is another major event showcasing Korean art and culture, Kim said, and is the first full-scale exhibition dedicated to the art of Joseon, the last ruling dynasty of the country, which profoundly shaped the culture and identity of modern Korea.

About 150 sets of objects will be on display, including painted screens, scrolls, calligraphy, costumes, ceramics and rare Buddhist statuary and paintings. Several national treasures are on loan too, including a 10-meter-tall Buddha painting from Hwaeomsa Temple in Gure, South Jeolla Province, which had never left Korean soil.

Alongside the exhibit, a variety of cultural events are planned in Philadelphia, designed to drum up interest in Korea. Among them are a fashion show of hanbok, the Korean traditional costume, a screening of Korean films, a K-pop dance party and a cooking demonstration by Marja Vongerichten of PBS’s “Kimchi Chronicles.”

Treasures from Korea will also be on view at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (June 29 to Sept. 28) and the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (Nov. 2 to Jan. 11, 2015).

By Lee Sun-young (