The Korea Herald


RM donates W100m to protect Korean cultural heritages overseas

By Lim Jae-seong

Published : Sept. 15, 2022 - 15:51

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RM, leader of K-pop boy band BTS (Herald DB) RM, leader of K-pop boy band BTS (Herald DB)

RM, leader of K-pop boy band BTS, donated 100 million won ($71,700) for the second year in a row to preserve and restore Korean cultural heritage overseas, the Cultural Heritage Administration and Overseas Korean Cultural Heritage Foundation announced Thursday.

The K-pop superstar, whose real name is Kim Nam-joon, recently made the donation to the OKCHF, asking that the money be used to promote the beauty of Korean paintings throughout the world, the foundation said.

Last September, the singer also made a donation of 100 million won to the foundation, which was not made public at that time.

The OKCHF, which works on preserving 104 pieces of Korean cultural heritage across eight countries, said last year’s donation went toward the preservation of "hwarot," a traditional Korean wedding costume, made in the Joseon era (1392-1910).

Only about 40 articles of hwarot, including 30 in Korea and 10 overseas, are known to exist around the world. Among them, pieces owned by the Los Angeles County Museum of Art have various embroidered patterns and had been preserved well, carrying high artistic and historical importance, according to the foundation.

After five months of necessary preservation, the hwarot are set to be on display for the public at the National Palace Museum of Korea next year and in LA in 2024.

RM’s donation this year will go toward the foundation’s project of making art brochures of Korean paintings scattered across major museums and galleries around the world.

RM has been increasingly seen in the art scene as a patron. He participated in the first-ever exhibition of Korean modern arts, “The Space Between: The Modern in Korean Art,” at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art by recording the audio guide for 10 pieces of art in Korean and English for free. He was also awarded as the 2020 Patrons of the Arts by Arts Council Korea for donating 100 million won to the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art that year.

The photo of The photo of "hwarot." (LACMA)