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[Well-curated weekend] Walk around Seoul City Wall for a weekend break

A model wears malgun, hanbok designed for horseback riding (Damyeon)
A model wears malgun, hanbok designed for horseback riding (Damyeon)

For Seoulites, this weekend is a great chance to hike a somewhat challenging historical path in the northern part of Seoul.

The 9th Hanyang Doseong Culture Festival under the theme “Sungseong: Embracing the Wishes” will be held both on and offline, including on-site participation for visitors.

The festival begins Oct. 1 and continues for 10 days.

Hanyang Doseong, also known as the Seoul City Wall, follows the ridges of Bugaksan (Baekaksan), Naksan (Naktasan), Namsan (Mongmyeoksan) and Inwangsan, the four main mountains surrounding the capital. In addition to the four main gates and four auxiliary gates, the arch water gates were built at Hanyang Doseong to transport water from Cheonggye Stream to outside the city wall.

The entire pathway along the wall is called “Sunseong-gil,” with the wall measuring between 5 to 8 meters in height and the pathway stretching for 18.6 kilometers. The Seoul Metropolitan Government has divided the path into six walking trail sections for visitors’ convenience, with a sign post of each located at the foot of the trail.

The application deadline for the “Sunseong-gil Walk Challenge” has ended for domestic participants, but kits are still available for foreigners, who can apply online. The online mission is complete after one uploads a picture on social media at Sunseong-gil, using goodies provided in the kit.

For foreigners learning Korean, the “Speak in Korean, Hanyangdoseong Contest” is held until Oct. 4. Contest participants should submit a three-minute presentation video online on a topic of their choice that is related to Hanyang Doseong and Korean culture. A 800,000 won ($675) grand prize will be awarded to an individual or team, followed by four other awards.

The “My Camera Vlog Contest” is open for anyone interested in taking a closer peek into Hanyang Doseong, individually or in groups of four or less.

Winners will be announced online from Oct. 9 to 10 on the festival’s website,

Hyper-realist landscape

American hyper-realist painter Alice Dalton Brown is holding her first overseas retrospective exhibition in Seoul, inviting viewers to meditate on the blue scenery that expands beyond the canvas.

The exhibition “Alice Dalton Brown, Where the Light Breaths” at the My Art Museum in Gangnam-gu, Seoul, shows 80 paintings from the artist’s early works to three paintings she newly created for the exhibition Seoul -- “In the Quiet Moment,” “Expectation,” and “Lifting Light.”

Dalton Brown’s signature landscape paintings feature a window and curtains gently flying in the wind out on the water. The painting series dates back to 1995, inspired by fluttering curtains she saw at her friend’s house.

Born in 1939, Dalton Brown grew up in Ithaca, New York. Scenes of the town, especially times when it basked in the late-afternoon sunlight seeping through the clouds -- was a great source of inspiration for the artist.

Raising three children, she continued to work with acrylic paint in the kitchen, using shadows reflected in children’s building blocks as a motif. Her hyper-realistic style became prominent from the 1970s onward. She still works as an artist.

The exhibition at the My Art Museum runs through Oct. 24 and online reservation is required on Naver to visit the exhibition.

Hanbok for horseback riding

Hanbok designer Lee Hye-soon continues her exploration of hanbok heritage in the second of her “Secret Heritage” series, showcasing “malgun,” attire that was worn for horseback riding.

Like her previous show that focused on burial clothes, Lee conducted extensive research, examining historical records and archives to create the designs that are showcased at the show in her studio along with a video presentation.

Malgun were clothes that were worn when riding horses, according to Lee, often directly over attire for outings. Both men and women wore malgun, she says. The designs varied according to the wearer’s social class. The higher one’s social ranking, the wider the total width of the garment -- meaning more fabric was used. It goes without saying that malgun was made of fine fabrics for the upper class.

The exhibition is being held at Damyeon in Cheongdam-dong, Seoul, through Oct. 9. The exhibition is open from 10a.m. to 6 p.m.

SICAF 2021

The Seoul International Cartoon Animation Festival, one of the most renowned animation festivals in Asia, is ready for animation fans at Oil Tank Culture Park and Megabox Sangam World Cup Stadium in Mapo-gu, western Seoul.

The festival will start on Oct. 1. and run through Oct. 4.

Under the concept of “Reset and Pleasure together,” SICAF 2021 is divided into two different sections -- the exhibition and film festival -- where visitors can enjoy both famous cartoons and promising animations.

At Oil Tank Culture Park, the exhibition of two Korean webtoon series -- “Sweet Home” and “The Boxer” -- with various 3D and digital displays are on show. The festival also offers meet and greets with voice actors and acapella group Acacia’s animation soundtrack concert.

The opening film is director Choi Byung-sun’s “Duda and Dada: The Secret of HooHoo Island,” a Korean animation revolving around Duda and his friends searching for the missing HooHoo Island.

Promising cartoons and animation projects are categorized into various sections: independent short films, production character animation for TV, game and film cinematics, animated films for kids, experimental films, student character films and more. The selected films are available at Megabox Sangam World Cup Stadium in Mapo-gu.

The tickets for both the exhibition and film festival are available on SICAF‘s website.

By Culture Desk
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Korea Herald daum