I am loving it here in Seoul. Admittedly I was a bit frazzled even before I boarded the plane, having completed the final event for the Landscape : Islands project (that has been going on for 14 months) a mere four days before leaving, what with the jet lag on top, but it’s so exciting to be here at last!
After two years in the planning, it was so great to finally meet up with KyungWon Baek again. I haven’t seen her since European Ceramic Context on Bornholm in Denmark in September 2014.
She whisked me straight off to an opening on my first day. Deokho Kim’s exquisite works were well worth seeing. I was surprised and delighted to see that it was Gallery LVS Project, whom I met at Collect at the Saatchi in May 2015. I had been meaning to get in touch with them and here I was! KyungWon introduced me to Minsoo Lee and his partner Bokyung Kim, both participating in Made in Korea, and Inhwa Lee, another brilliant ceramist who I have been connected with on FB for a while. In the schedule is a visit to the studio where Deokho, Inhwa and MinSoo are all doing a residency at Yanggu Porcelain Museum. Sounds like a fabulous place!
The exhibition was extremely well presented; excellent works, beautiful interpretation material and literature in a very elegant space. A long, chic bar contained a row of tempting Korean morsels and flocks of almost exclusively female visitors buzzed around. A perfect way to start the trip.
Then the gallery director turned up and I introduced myself. She almost remembered who I was (don’t blame her – there must have been thousands of faces coming and going at Collect), but once I started telling her about the project, before I knew it, she was talking about potentially involving me in the Cheonju International Craft Biennale. When the head curator arrived, who remembered exactly who I was, we went further discussing possibilities and it remains to be seen what may come of this. But what a great start. One of the outcomes I would like to achieve from this trip is to find a venue for exhibiting my work in Korea. The Craft Biennale has been mentioned to me by many people as a good thing to be involved in, so here’s hoping!
Then Won took me out for a walk around Hongdae, a super buzzy, incredibly busy place – even more so as it was Friday night! We went to a local place she knows to have a traditional Korean barbecue where they bring you loads of dishes surrounding a fire pit in the middle of the table (constructed out of an oil drum) where you cook your own meat. Very tasty and great fun! I reckon these three weeks are going to fly by!