who ... moi?

a social butterfly: scared of much, but not of many. never lets the truth get in the way of a good story. not a fan of acronyms, snakes and angelina jolie. a HUGE fan of Fathead.

this blog is black for ENERGY-SAVING reasons.

thanks for your understanding.
if it's too dark, put your glasses on old one.

Monday, March 8, 2010

the leeum

two and a half months in south korea, and our lives are completely changed.  we've gone from a home with a garden to a single bedroom, from private cars to public transport,  from african sun to asian snowfall.

the changes have been immeasurable and countless - but one significant shift has been the complete absence of stress and cognitive challenge.  no big presentations to a international audience, no conference calls, no tricky negotiations.  while this sounds like heaven, the drawback to being in a constant state of chilled-outness, is that your brain starts to porridge somewhat. 

in time, you begin to feel a little bit thicker than you remember your "former" self.

to shake things up, we decided an injection of culture would probably assist in stretching our minds - so off we went to the leeum - samsung museum of art.

guests to this museum are greeted by two gigantic brass-cast spiders which crouch atop the roof of one of the exhibition halls.  they are frightening in their scale and the knarliness of their texture ... and stunningly impressive for the same reasons.

to give you an idea of scale - i made footie and fathead stand on either end of the larger one (at the back).  the abdomen (which is filled with marble eggs) is roughly my height.

in case you were wondering: yes, he is pretending to be under attack of a man-eating spider. 
(i would assume that this is the effect that giant spider statues have on grown men.  so ladies, should you find yourselves under one of these with your man ... brace yourselves, or bring something to swat them with).

leeum is probably korea's version of the guggenheim or moma.  it was established in 1965, and the building itself is of such exquisite architectural style, that it too belongs in an art museum.   it was so refreshing to be in a building that had been created, rather than just built.  unfortunately most architecture here is seriously lacking in imagination and remains purely functional: 

you want somewhere to put something, so you will need a floor, four walls, a ceiling and a door.  done. 

view from the top of the spiralling stairwell that is the core of the exhibition space

three sections of the building contain different museums - the first devoted to traditional korean artwork, ceramics from ancient dynasties and bronze buddist works.

the second museum houses modern and contemporary works from here and abroad - with an impressive collection of a few well known artists like chuck close, andy warhol, willem de kooning, jean arp, francis bacon and mark rothko.

the third part of the museum is an interactive education centre which draws visitors into the creative process. it was quite a modern and edgey space, and a totally refreshing side of korea - one we've not really seen much of. 

fathead reclines in one of the interactive installations where urban waste and scrap have been used to create spaces that play with light and optical illusion

children who visit the museum are given a 3D image kit, on which they can recreate their favourite piece.  the depth is achieved quite simply with transparent layers (each carrying a particular colour) which are set apart from eachother.

much to our amazement, the basement revealed an entire underground landscape:   indoor corn fields ...

... made you look ... no, this is actually a photographic set ... rather effective though, hey?

No comments:

Post a Comment