Beautiful Korea

Beautiful Korea

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Last Weekend

Last semester I had an extra after school class with several teachers at the school, teaching conversational English. One of them, Kim Moon Seok, is an art teacher.

Last week, he had a showing of his art at the Insa Art Center in Seoul, and on Sunday I went to see it. I liked his work, and enjoyed the chance to see it. He works mainly in frescos, although there was also one sculpture. I was glad that I went. But there was more.

He took me across the hall to another gallery. There, the work of a Buddhist monk was on display. All of them were paintings of Buddha in a pointillist style, but get this: they were done on aluminum panels with nail polish instead of paint. Yes, nail polish, including the glittery kind. Some of them were medium-sized, about 3'x4', others covered almost an entire (large) wall. And they were gorgeous. Some were so convincing that I had to go close to make sure they were really 2-D paintings and didn't have 3-D bits sticking out of them. My favorite was almost entirely done in blues and blacks, 12 separate panels put together into a kind of collage of Buddha images.

I wish I had taken pictures. I didn't know if it would be ok to do so, and the monk didn't speak English, and I didn't want to seem rude or disrespectful, so I didn't try. You will just have to imagine the awesomeness for yourselves.

1 comment:

  1. Okay, that sounds really interesting! But really difficult to imagine, haha. Nail polish?! Aluminum panels?! Wow.

    When we went to Japan I learned "May I take a photo?" before I actually understood the grammar of the phrase. I think it was one of my most deployed phrases of the trip! I don't know if you haven't learned that in Korean yet or you have and you just weren't sure even asking was appropriate. It might be in that Korean phrasebook, at any rate. (Oh, if you do visit Japan, it's "Shashin o totte mo ii desu ka?" and I'll record it for you at some point if you go. heh. :))