Showing posts with label South Korea. Show all posts
Showing posts with label South Korea. Show all posts

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

"Integration: Fusion and Adaptation" at the Wuhan Art Museum

"Integration: Fusion and Adaptation" is the fourth and current exhibition for the Wuhan Ink Art Biennale at the Wuhan Art Museum. As described at the museum:
The preceding three exhibitions present a chronological sequence of perpetuation and development, transformation and innovation, in Chinese ink painting since Ming and Qing periods. "Integration" showcases the richness of contemporary ink art through works that are rooted in tradition yet present new ideas, pieces that are more avant-garde in creative concept and method, as well as pieces by foreign artists working in ink.

One piece on display features Chinese calligraphy, common at art museums in China.

Chinese Calligraphy: Excerpt from Thoreau's A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers (2012) by Michael Cherney

Less common is the calligrapher's home country — the U.S. — and the topic of the writing, which is captured in Michael Cherney's title for the work: Excerpt from Thoreau's A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers (2012).

South Korean Shin Young Ho's piece Liquid Drawing_4207 (2015) doesn't include calligraphy, but it does have ants.

Liquid Drawing_4207 by Shin Young Ho

Li Huichang's Groan No. 66 (2015) has neither calligraphy nor ants, but there is still much going on.

Li Huichang's Groan No. 66 (2015)

One of the more colorful pieces at the exhibition is Paradise (2008) by Huang Min.

Paradise (2008) by Huang Min

Finally, the piece I pondered most was Stop! (2015) by Liu Qinghe.

Stop! (2015) by Liu Qinghe

Like many others on display, the large piece of art is worth a closer look.

closeup of person in Stop! (2015) by Liu Qinghe

closeup of people in Stop! (2015) by Liu Qinghe

The Wuhan Art Museum has much more. One sign indicates this exhibition was supposed to have already ended over a week ago, so I am not sure how much longer it will be around. In any case, the Wuhan Art Museum is free. You just have to scan your Chinese ID card to open an entrance gate. If you are a foreigner, don't worry. You can walk around the gate — no need to stop.

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Thousands of Americans Remembered at a Memorial in South Korea

The War Memorial of Korea in Seoul covers thousands of years of Korean military history, with an emphasis on the Korean War. One particularly affecting section of the memorial displays the names of service members & police of the Republic of Korea who were killed in various wars & conflicts and the names of service members in the United Nations Forces who were killed in the Korean War.

For today's Memorial Day in the United States, below are some photos taken this past weekend that capture portions of the display with more than thirty-thousand names of Americans "whose noble service and ultimate sacrifice preserved the freedom of the Republic of Korea".

outdoor display of names at the War Memorial of Korea

wreath with the words "IN MEMORY OF THE FALLEN"

names of service persons from Arkansas who died in the Korean War

names of service persons from the Virgin Islands who died in the Korean War

flower on top of an engraving of the Earth

names of Americans who died in the Korean War on display at the War Memorial of Korea

names of Americans who died in the Korean War on display at the War Memorial of Korea

names of Americans who died in the Korean War on display at the War Memorial of Korea

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Putian Street Food: Gimbap

In a recent conversation, a person I met from Fujian province commented on the many high-quality fake shoes available in the city of Putian, not very far from her hometown. I don't have much to say about Putian's shoe industry, but it provides me an excuse to share more about the coastal city almost directly west from Taipei across the Taiwan strait. I never got around to several posts I had in mind when I was there two years ago.

So here is a scene including one of Putian's many street food vendors:

street vendor selling Korean sushi (gimbap) in Putian, Fujian, China

Fujian has great local cuisine, but the street food vendor was selling what the sign described as Korean sushi*, otherwise known as gimbap (or kimbap). My impression is that gimbap vendors are most popular with younger people. I have seen similar gimbap vendors in many other Chinese cities as well. Like New Orleans roasted chicken vendors, the gimbap vendors show how China's street food can extend beyond traditional Chinese offerings.

*The sign's "韩国寿司" literally translates as "Korean sushi". My understanding is that "紫菜包饭" would be a more direct Chinese translation for "gimbap".

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Photos That Nearly Made Here it in 2013

When I upload a photo to Picasa it usually means I plan to use it soon in a blog post. But sometimes things don't go as planned. So to start off 2014 here, I will share a mishmash of photos from 2013 that were uploaded but for one reason or another never made their way into a published post. In addition to any descriptions, I'll share links to earlier related posts--all except two from 2013. Together they provide reminders of a tiny bit of what was covered here during the previous year and a hint of some of what else I had hoped to share and write about.

So in chronological order...

2013 for me began celebrating in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. After Kuala Lumpur, I went to Penang, where I listened to a woman describe her challenges visiting her son in the US, and later Melaka, where not far from the Melaka River I saw this shop in a mall:

stall selling a variety of items in a mall in Melaka, Malasia

Some of the flip-flops (sandals) for sale caught my attention:

flip-flops with the logos for Facebook, Yahoo, Google, and YouTube

What do all of the brands on these flip-flops have in common? They are all global online services created and based in the US. I didn't see any Baidu, WeChat, or Tencent flip-flops...

Later in Melaka, I think not to far from where I met a young woman seeking forgiveness, I looked up and saw this:

blue sky with clouds in Melaka, Malaysia

For more about why my time in China has given me a deeper appreciation of blue skies with "normal" clouds, see the 2012 post "Skies and Clouds in China" with scenes from Macau.

After Malaysia, I headed to Phnom Penh, Cambodia, where I documented many examples of people riding pedal-powered vehicles, motorbikes, and motorized-vehicles which were pulling or pushing something. However, there was one example, like one of a coffin being delivered on a motorbike, that I had hoped to share in its own post. I never got around to the post, so here is the photo:

young woman with many flowers riding a pedal-powered rickshaw in Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Street vehicles weren't the only thing on my mind in Phnom Penh. For example, at one shop I noticed this screen for a cash register at a small convenience store:

computer screen showing calculations for price and change in US dollars and Cambodian Riel

In Cambodia, both US and Cambodian currency are regularly used, and transactions can include both. The above screen is presumably an attempt to make life easier and reduce the number of errors.

While in Cambodia I also went to the riverside town of Kampot. In the countryside I walked to Fish Isle, ate a mysterious sea creature, surprised a little girl by answering her phone call, and explored the area to the north by bike. I didn't share many scenes from central Kampot, but here's one at a large market:

man posing next to a van with its back door open to pack in more vegetables

After Cambodia, I went to Vietnam, Taiwan, and the US. No unused uploaded photos from those places, but there's one from my next stop: Seoul, South Korea:

MLB store in Seoul, South Korea

This was one of several MLB (Major League Baseball) stores I saw in Seoul. In the window the logo for the Los Angeles Dodgers can be seen--the same team some men were watching at Seoul's Namdaemun Market.

After returning to China, I had the opportunity to revisit Cheung Chau--one of Hong Kong's outlying islands. While there, I saw this monkey:

hanging orange toy monkey in Cheung Chau

I had considered posting the photo without any comment except a title something like "Orange Ennui in Cheung Chau".

Fortunately, ennui wasn't an issue for me on Cheung Chau. Nor was it during my visits to nearby Macau where I saw beer speeding through the streets on the peninsula and these three young women in Cotai:

three young women wearing racing clothes, helmets, and goggles in Macau

Almost 2 years ago I shared my experience taking a random bus ride in Zhuhai, Guangdong province. Several months ago I took another random bus ride in Zhuhai. Maybe someday I will share more of what I saw, but for now I will just say I was particularly surprised to hear, and then see, goats:

three black goats on and around a brick path in Zhuhai

Also while in Zhuhai, I shared some scenes from a late-night outdoor dining establishment. For a contrast, here's an outdoor dining scene at a pricier establishment:

outdoor dining scene at a cafe in Zhuhai

Usually I enjoy the local Chinese-style seafood in Zhuhai, but this is my favorite place for a smoked salmon sandwich.

Finally, more recently I shared a scene from a restaurant in Changsha--a city where I've seen a lot of change. This is the spicy chicken dish I ate for lunch at the restaurant:

spicy chicken dish, rich, and a pot of tea at a restaurant in Changsha, China

And that brings this unplanned set of photos to a close. Undoubtedly, more photos, experiences, and thoughts from previous years will appear here in the future--as will new ones.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Games in Seoul and Changsha

While passing through Seoul's Jongmyo Park today, I noticed a number of men playing games.

two men playing baduk (Go) at a park in Seoul

two men playing janggi (Korean Chess) at a park in Seoul

two men playing baduk (Go) at Jongmyo Park in Seoul

I was reminded of the park where I saw men playing games in Changsha, China. But instead of games such as xiangqi (Chinese chess), most of the men at Jongmyo Park were playing baduk (Go) and a few others were playing janggi (Korean chess). There's much else one could consider in comparing the scenes from Seoul and Changsha. And one's perspective could affect how similar or different they appear.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Lanterns in Seoul for Buddha's Birthday

Similar to some other Asian countries, South Korea celebrated Buddha's birthday this past Friday. One clear sign of the holiday I noticed was the many lanterns on display, especially at Buddhist temples. The colors, shapes, variety, and arrangement of the lanterns added another layer to the experience of walking through the temples I recently visited. To provide a small taste, I'll share a series of photos I took at the Bongeunsa Temple in Seoul.

lanterns at Bongeunsa Temple in Seoul

lanterns at Bongeunsa Temple in Seoul

woman praying under many red lanterns at Bongeunsa Temple in Seoul

lanterns at Bongeunsa Temple in Seoul

outdoor path with lanterns at Bongeunsa Temple

red lanterns at Bongeunsa Temple in Seoul

white lanterns at Bongeunsa Temple in Seoul

lanterns at Bongeunsa Temple with city skyline in the background

lanterns handing from a colorful ceiling at Bongeunsa Temple in Seoul

lanterns at Bongeunsa Temple in Seoul

For more lanterns in Seoul, see My Modern Met here and the Mail Online here (H/T Justin Ray).

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Sitting With Bush in Front of a Korean Mosque

Today in South Korea I visited the Seoul Central Mosque. Seoul's only mosque and the neighborhood around it provide an opportunity to learn more about the lives of a group of people in South Korea numbering in only the tens of thousands--Korean Muslims.

As I was passing by the mosque a second time I noticed a woman sitting in front of the main gate.

woman with a book sitting in front of the gate to the Seoul Central Mosque

Notably, she was holding a book in a manner which suggested she wanted passersby to notice it. I took a closer look and saw the book was none other than the English version of Decision Points, a memoir by George W. Bush.

I found this to be... curious.

So I approached the woman and asked if she had read the book. She had.

I then asked what she thought of George W. Bush. She said she respected the former president of the US because of his efforts to fight terrorism.

I waited to see if she would say more on her own. She only said that I could visit the mosque and that she occasionally walks around its grounds herself.

Since I sensed she was not entirely comfortable and I suspected a long conversation might be required to fully answer the questions now in my mind, I decided to simply wish her a good day and walked away to continue my explorations in the area.

If I have a chance, though, I might see if she's later willing to continue the conversation. I wouldn't be surprised if I could find her in the same spot with the same book on another day.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Seoulish Jujubes

I've enjoyed my fair share of tea in China, including at a mountain lake in Changsha. This afternoon, I had the pleasure of being introduced to an historic teahouse in Seoul, South Korea.

As surprising as it may seem, I didn't drink any tea. Instead, my friend suggested a jujube (red date) drink. It proved to be an excellent choice as we chatted about a variety of topics, ranging from monkeys in museums to online services in South Korea.

A good afternoon in Seoul it was.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Watching Major League Baseball in Seoul

As I walked through Namdaemun Market in Seoul, South Korea, this past Monday, I saw several men watching a baseball game between the Los Angeles Dodgers and the San Francisco Giants.

three men watching a American baseball game on a TV outside at a market

Notably, the starting pitcher for the Dodgers was South Korean Hyun-Jin Ryu. This is Ryu's first season playing for Major League Baseball in North America. Possibly to the disappointment of these viewers, this was not one of Ryu's finer games. He gave up 4 earned run in 6 innings and the Dodgers lost the game. Ryu now has a record of 3 wins and 2 losses for the season.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Reconnecting With Another Unexpected Connection

Yesterday, I made another unexpected connection when I was at Seoul Plaza in Seoul, South Korea.

people relaxing on the grass at Seoul Plaza

While there I was reminded of my visit to Klyde Warren Park in Dallas, US.

people relaxing on the grass at Klyde Warren Park

And in case you're wondering, yes, this post ends my longest non-posting period since starting this blog. The pause was partly due to having plenty on my plate* during my first visit to the US in several years. Another reason was that when my plate appeared empty, it seemed like a good time to keep it that way.

But now I'm back, both in terms of blogging and being in Asia. Although I am eager to return to the usual themes, while they are still fresh in my mind I will share some assorted thoughts about my several weeks in the US.

More soon. Really.

*This was meant figuratively, but the literal interpretation also holds true.