April 27, 2020 - e-flux - Korean museums, non-profits, and foundations respond to COVID-19
April 27, 2020


Installation view of Angelica Mesiti, The Colour of Saying, 2015 in The Future of Silence When your tongue vanishes.

Courtesy Suwon Museum.

Lee Ungno, Composition Collage, 1960. Collage on canvas. 

Courtesy MMCA. 

Courtesy Seoul Museum of Art (SeMA).

Courtesy ARKO Art Center. 

Korean museums, non-profits, and foundations respond to COVID-19
Online programs including video tours, artist interviews, and educational programs for kids


In response to COVID-19, the organizations collected here have all initiated virtual programs with the aim of establishing a stronger dialogue with the public and jointly fighting the spread of the disease. Their new digital programs range in topic and approach: from guided tours on YouTube to artist interviews, from a Curator's Diary to educational programs for kids, these organizations have re-purposed their websites and social media channels to ensure that art remain a relavent, productive, and positive force during these challenging times.

Nam June Paik Art Center
The Future of Silence: When your tongue vanishes

Nam June Paik Art Center unveils its first special exhibition in 2020 titled The Future of Silence: When your tongue vanishes online at njpartcenter.kr. The exhibition examines language as spoken and written, as body and mind, as the corporeal and the conceptual, and as systems and cultures. It was scheduled to open on February 27, but Nam June Paik Art Center has temporarily closed from February 24 to reduce the risk of the COVID-19. Now, Nam June Paik Art Center opens the exhibition to the public online with a guided tour of the curator, you will see the exhibition at home. 

Website: www.njpac-en.ggcf.kr/when-your-tongue-vanishes
Facebook: @namjunepaikartcenter
Instagram: @njpartcenter
Twitter: @NamJunePaikArt

Suwon Museum of Art, Suwon Art Eco
Cooking Emotions

The exhibition Cooking Emotions held at Suwon Art Eco, a branch of the Suwon Museum of Art, will be shared online through YouTube. Viewers can listen to commentary given by the educator who curated the exhibition while enjoying the exhibition’s immersive program.

The educator also leads the educational program "Emotion Pie" for children, showing them how to use everyday objects to visualize their emotions in detail and giving them the chance to explore this process at home.

The video can be accessed free of charge at any time on the Suwon Museum of Art’s YouTube channel (Suma TV). The museum will continue to update its channel with new videos introducing its 2020 exhibition lineup, past exhibition catalogs, and other varied content.

Website: suma.suwon.go.kr

Lee Ungno Museum
Lee Ungno, Paintings made from Paper
April 7-June 28, 2020

Artists: Lee Ungno, Zao Wouki, Jean Dubuffet, Jean Fautrier, Kwon Youngwoo, Park Chul, Chun Kwangyoung, Han Kijoo

In this exhibition, visitors will be introduced to a selection of unreleased paper artworks by Lee Ungno, classified according to materials and techniques for the purpose of this particular event. Visitors will also have the chance to view a fine collection of works produced by artists in Korea and overseas who have been keenly interested in the potential of paper as an artistic medium. The exhibition is expected to give visitors the opportunity to appreciate the creative ideas of a group of distinguished artists who use paper to create remarkable works of art.  

Website: www.leeungnomuseum.or.kr

Seoul Museum of Art (SeMA)

Seoul Museum of Art (SeMA) has temporarily closed all seven locations amid the coronavirus pandemic, but SeMA is staying connected with the public through #SeMA_Link program, offering a series of online content and virtual live events on the museum’s social media channels. The program includes a seven-part series “Curator’s Diary,” giving a behind-the-scenes look at the exhibition Leandro Erlich: Both Sides Now; weekly curator Q&A; educational content introducing the museum’s permanent collection every Monday and explaining art movements and terminology every Wednesday; and more. From April through May, #SeMA_Link will introduce a five-part video series on the preparation and installation of the exhibitions Collecting for All and Collecting Architecture for All. 

Website: www.sema.seoul.go.kr
Instagram: @seoulmuseumofart
Facebook: @SeoulMuseumofArt.kr
Twitter: @SeoulSema 

ARKO Art Center
History Has Failed Us, but No Matter*
*Taken from the novel Pachinko by MinJin Lee

For this spring, Arko Art Center had originally scheduled to present History Has Failed Us, But No Matter, last year’s Korean Pavilion exhibition for the 58th Venice Biennale. However, the exhibition opening has been tentatively suspended amid the COVID-19 pandemic, so Arko Art Center has prepared an online exhibition for our audience. The online exhibition will have a preview video introducing the artworks with the composition of History Has Failed Us, But No Matter. Also, there will be interviews with the Curator of the Korean Pavilion, Hyunjin Kim, on her curatorial ideas for the exhibition as well as the three participating artists—Hwayeon Nam, siren eun young jung, and Jane Jin Kaisen—on their works. These videos will be released consecutively on YouTube, Instagram and Facebook. The online materials may replace the docent tours when the exhibition reopens to the public. 

Website: www.arko.or.kr
Youtube: @arkoartcenter
Instagram: @arkoartcenter

Platform-L Contemporary Art Center

In response to COVID-19, Platform-L Contemporary Art Center initiated several digital contents via its official Youtube channel, while fostering long term conversations on sustainability issues with their exhibitions and other programs. Platform-L has worked together to bring audiences a selection of their current exhibition, The Best World Possible and past exhibitions in Virtual Reality, where the artworks can be viewed with 360 degrees, along with the curator talks. 

To keep social distancing, Platform-L is also developing a series of education kits for children with Ewha University, which will be distributed in May.

Website: www.platform-l.org
YouTube: @platformL

MMCA, Korea

The National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Korea (MMCA, director Youn Bummo) presents the first calligraphy-only exhibition since its opening and the first new exhibition of the year, The Modern and Contemporary Korean Writing, through the MMCA YouTube channel. You can watch the curator-guided exhibition tour of The Modern and Contemporary Korean Writing on Youtube now. 

Website: www.mmca.go.kr

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