Pork chops for foreigners (or Seoul Part 이 [i])
Day three in Seoul. I headed off on the subway this morning to Seoul Grand Park and the National Museum of Contemporary Art. The Seoul Grand Park is a big park (shocking based on the name) with a museum, the Seoul zoo, a campground, hiking and a number of small amusement parks amount other things. I had a nice walk through part of the park on my way to the museum.
The museum had two special exhibits, one on a Korean abstract artist named Ha Chonghyun. His work was large and expressive in the way that he used the paint and the canvas. One of his major series was called Conjection, which consisted of paint pushed through the back of a loosely woven canvas. I understand that abstract work isn’t for everyone. (“Hey, my five year old could have done that…”) But I found this series fascinatingly beautiful and his sculptural use of the paint mixed with using his canvas as part of his work rather than just a vehicle or surface for his paint created environments that were both tactile and ethereal. To see images of his work go here for his personal website.
The second exhibit was called “MOVE” and was a look at the art of the post- modern dance movement. (It was completely by chance that I happened to go to the museum when this was showing.) I found this exhibit to be rather bland. I do think that the physical objects that can be used in dance can be quite beautiful. And many of the items in the exhibit did have a certain aesthetic attractiveness to them. But there was a quality of interaction that was lacking because it was the objects of dance without the context of movement. (This is an area that the art department at Middlebury and I had some disagreements, so I am not going to write too much so as to avoid ranting…) While some aspects of the exhibit were successful, overall I thought it was kind of lame.
Also of note were an exhibit on silence in photography and a printmaking exhibition.
On the way, back I decided to take the chairlift back to the parking lot/subway station. I realized that 1) yes, I am still quite afraid of heights and 2) somehow having skis on make me less afraid of heights. I cannot quite figure out the second part of that, but I know I have been higher off the ground at Sunday River but much less uncomfortable. Strange.
I also passed over a lovely rose garden and a petting zoo with LOTS of sheep.
Once I got home I headed out for a yummy dinner of 비빔밥 (bibimbap, 拌饭). Rice with assorted goodies, hot sauce and a fried egg that you mix together.
I forgot to take a picture before I mixed (and started eating…)
As I walked back to my hostel I ran across the following sign which I just had to photograph. I don’t know if there is something special that I am missing, but: