The Korea Herald

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Traditional craft exhibition in modern setting

By Kim Hae-yeon

Published : April 21, 2023 - 14:25

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A visitor looks at work on display at “The Greatest Artisan’s Market, A visitor looks at work on display at “The Greatest Artisan’s Market," an exhibition held at the National Intangible Cultural Heritage Training Center in Gangnam, southern Seoul. (KCHF)

An exhibition introducing traditional craftworks by artisans against a backdrop of pop-art designs is open at Gyeol, the National Intangible Cultural Heritage Training Center exhibition hall, in Gangnam, until Oct. 31.

Titled “The Greatest Artisan’s Market,” the exhibition features some 72 craftworks by 21 National Intangible Cultural Heritage title holders and instructors.

Among the highlights of the exhibition are "ipsa," an in-lay of ornamental silver or gold string; "chimseon," traditional sewing; "maedeup," decorative knotting; "soban," small tables; and "akgi," traditional musical instruments.

Visitors can take selfies in multiple photo zones under the themes of living, fashion, a food court, a lounge and a bookstore. Each zone features the relevant craftworks.

"We used the spatial image of a market to let the audience break away from the common perception that traditional crafts are bland," Jin mi-kyung, KCHF's team leader said. It is hoped that the exhibition will allow visitors to view traditional craftworks as things that are used in daily life, rather than as an art form to be displayed in museums, Jin added.

Meanwhile, experiential learning programs led by craft artisans will be launched in July. Online reservations will be available on the KCHF's website.

"The Greatest Artisan's Market" is open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., except for Mondays. Admission is free.