A Good Lawyer’s Wife

January 31, 2013

Korean Cultural Centre UK

The story involves dancer Eun Ho-jeong (Mun So-Ri), wife of the unfaithful Yeong-jak (Hwang Jeong-min) and mother to a seven-year-old son. She meets a teenage boy and named Shin Ji-un (Bong Tae-gyu) and the two share an intimate friendship despite their age difference. When Ji-un’s father discovers their relationship, he threatens to tell her husband. Meanwhile, her father-in-law (Kim In-mum) dies and her mother-in-law (Yun Yeo-jeong) quickly starts up another relationship. A Good Lawyer’s Wife was screened at the 2003 Cannes Film Festival.

Winnebago, Carpets, Onsen, Potter by Peter McDonald

Monday to Friday, 9:30am- 5:00pm

Daiwa Foundation Japan House, 13/14 Cornwall Terrace, Outer Circle, London, NW1 4PQ 

Peter McDonald depicts colourful scenes inhabited by people engaged in everyday activities. Images of teachers, artists, hairdressers or carpet sellers are constructed with an elementary graphic language. By making use of archetypes, symbolism and our incorrigible tendency to make the strange seem more familiar, McDonald’s alternative world reads like a parallel universe.

The artist describes the exhibition as a view of his painted universe, showcasing his paintings and works on paper, revealing the influence of everyday experiences upon his practice. For example the diptych, Looking for a Carpet(2009) was based on an experience during a trip to Morocco. Some of the works on paper reflect his stay in Japan during and after his year-long project Visitor, in Kanazawa, whilst the Noh drama series of works were based on his memories of traditional theatre performances and collaborations with the Kanazawa Noh Museum duringVisitor.

Peter McDonald was born in Tokyo in 1973, studying sculpture at Central St. Martins School of Art and painting at the Royal Academy Schools. He has had solo exhibitions at Kate MacGarry, Londonand also at Gallery Side 2, Tokyo, amongst others. He was awarded the John Moores Contemporary Painting Prize (2008). Art on the Underground commissioned McDonald to produce Art for Everybody a large scale billboard installation at Southwark station (2009). As artist-in-residence at the 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa, Japan (2011–12), he worked on a year-long project called Visitor, which included workshops and work-in-progress shows.

Daiwa Foundation Art Prize 2012 Exhibition Tokyo, SCAI THE BATHHOUSE, 18 January – 23 February 2013

18 January – 23 February 2013

Haroon Mirza, 2012 Daiwa Foundation Art Prize Winner, Solo exhibition at SCAI THE BATHHOUSE in Tokyo

We are delighted to present this solo exhibition by Haroon Mirza at SCAI THE BATHHOUSE in Tokyo, Japan. As the winner of the Daiwa Foundation Art Prize 2012, Mirza was given the opportunity to have this exhibition in Tokyo. Partnerships have been central to the successful realisation of the Art Prize and we are very grateful to Masami Shiraishi, President of SCAI THE BATHHOUSE, for agreeing to host this exhibition. I am confident that Mirza’s work will resonate strongly with Japanese audiences, and I hope also that his experiences in Japan will offer new inspirations for his artistic practice.

The Daiwa Foundation Art Prize aims to open doors in Japan for British artists. From over 700 initial applications, Haroon Mirza, Tom Hammick and Jennifer E. Price were shortlisted by our expert panel of judges – Jonathan Watkins, Mami Kataoka, Masami Shiraishi, Martin Gayford and Grayson Perry. Work by the short-listed artists was shown at the Daiwa Foundation Japan House Gallery in London in June and July 2012.

The Trustees of the Foundation join me in offering congratulations to Haroon Mirza. We hope that, in awarding the Daiwa Foundation Art Prize and holding this exhibition at SCAI THE BATHHOUSE, we will not only open new doors for British artists in Japan but also create valuable partnerships and opportunities for the future.

Jason James, Director General, Daiwa Anglo-Japanese Foundation

 

Art and Music and Haroon Mirza

 

“I was brought up Muslim … In certain regimes [in Islam] music is sort of frowned upon and related to things like infidelity and other terrible things if you listen to or engage with music”                                                                 

By Haroon Mirza

Haroon Mirza’s commitment to sound, to music in particular, is an intelligent challenge not only to the dogma of organized religion, but also to the institution of art. In Mirza’s work, music counteracts the religious tendencies in art, challenging the faith required to persist with the notion that art is somehow transcendent and distinct from everyday life.

Our ears, unlike our eyes, do not have lids. Waves of sound break through. Music is irresistible, undeniable, leaking in to affect us, insinuating, and pervasive. As a constant factor in the aesthetic equations devised by Haroon Mirza, music subtly contradicts the notion of a self-contained work of art, beautiful and true in itself. Our response to music stems from association, from the countless ideas and emotions we bring to our encounter with it, which can also be said of visual art.

Found objects, readymade and often ready-used, likewise occur in Mirza’s work as signs of free thinking, a philosophical scepticism that is, frankly, one of the only redeeming features of art. He knows, as we know, that the final artistic destinations of found objects were never envisaged by their makers, and so it becomes clear that this business of art is a question both of (our imaginative) projection and co-option. This applies as much to found objects that are works of art in their own right, and sounds that are music. All is revealed as being wonderfully unfixed.

Haroon Mirza was brought up Muslim. We were all brought up within some kind of prescriptive structure – be it ideological, religious and/or political – which insists that certain thoughts, tastes and behaviours are simply not acceptable. Art can be like that too, negative and dull. Haroon Mirza’s work, on the other hand, is life-affirming and positive.

 

Jonathan Watkins, Director Ikon Gallery

Haroon Mirza- Winner of the 2012 Daiwa Foundation Art Prize 

Haroon Mirza gained an MA in Fine Art at ChelseaCollegeof Art & Design with a Lynda Brockbank Scholarship (2007). He was awarded the Northern Art Prize 2010 and the Silver Lion for most promising young artist at the 54th Venice Biennale, 2011. He has participated in notable exhibitions including The British Art Show 7 (2011) organised by Hayward Touring, Preoccupied Waveforms (2012) at theNewMuseum inNew York, and the ninthGwangju Biennale inKorea.

 

Through his work, Mirza attempts to isolate the perceptual distinctions between noise, sound and music. He explores the potentiality for the visual and the acoustic to come together as one singular aesthetic form. These ideas are examined through lo-fi yet complex assemblages and installations that employ furniture, household electronics, video and existing artworks to formulate audio compositions with a temporal basis.

Image: Haroon Mirza, Digital Switchover, 2012 installation view of |||| ||, Kunst Halle Sankt Gallen, 2012 Courtesy of the artist, and SCAI THE BATHHOUSE Photo by Gunner Meier

United Red Army and the Legacy of Koji Wakamatsu Talk by Jasper Sharp

23 January 2013 from 6.30pm, at the Japan Foundation, London

Koji Wakamatsu, a controversial and iconoclastic filmmaker tragically passed away in October 2012 aged 76. A self-taught director and producer, Wakamatsu produced over 100 films in his career, gaining notoriety for his soft-core ‘pink’ and exploitation films before delving into a more politically-charged cinema. Wakamatsu’s most ambitious and celebrated film is United Red Army, a docu-drama depicting the rise and fall of 1960s left-wing radicalism, will be screened as part of this year’s Japan Foundation Touring Film Programme.

Complementing this screening, Jasper Sharp, writer and film curator, will briefly go through Wakamatsu’s prolific career and contribution to the nation’s cinema. Focusing particularly onUnited Red Army, this talk will look into how Wakamatsu came to make the film about a brutal and bloody history that had almost been forgotten, and how it stands out as the best among the films depicting Japan’s epic historical radicalism activities in the 1960s.

Call Girls part 1

I recently read a book on Thai prostitutes and found their stories and views on their job very interesting.

Bee, 31 years old.

‘I was 25 years old. I was not a virgin. I was not stupid. In Thailand I made 8,000 baht a month working in a shopping mall. As a call girl (in England) I could make 8,000 baht a day. What would you do?’

It makes me wonder what people would do if they could get in a day what they make in a month. Would you work as prostitute? I doubt I would but I suppose in certain cases it could be the best option.

 

Korean Culture Forum: A Bridge to the Future

Wednesday 30th Jan 2013, 5PM

Multi-purpose Hall, KCCUK

The Korean Cultural Centre UK is pleased to host a Forum on Korean Culturefeaturing four cultural experts. Each speaker will talk on their specialised cultural sector, the present and future of Korean culture’s presence in the UK and of course the possible future direction of the KCCUK itself.

 

*Guest Speakers and Abstract

The KCCUK – A look back at the first five years

Philip Gowman (Founder and Editor of London Korean Links)

Korean culture in London did not start with the opening of the Korean Cultural Centre (KCCUK) in 2008. But the establishment of a cultural venue at a high profile location with a regular government-funded budget has undoubtedly helped take the presentation of Korean culture in the UK to a new level. Full-time staff can obviously deliver projects that are beyond the reach of voluntary organisations. But going beyond the organisation of events – stressful enough in itself – the KCCUK has been able to build relationships with premier arts organisations in London such as the South Bank Centre and the Institute of Contemporary Arts which has enabled Korean cultural events to be presented at mainstream venues and thus reach a more generalist audience; and a flourishing relationship with London City Hall has enabled the Korean Village to become a central attraction of The Mayor’s Thames Festival. What is surprising though is that, contrary to some expectations, the entry of the Korean government into the promotion of Korean culture has not squeezed out private sector and individual initiatives. This talk will look back at the KCCUK’s achievements in its first five years and consider them alongside some of the complementary private sector projects during that period.

 

The Korean Wave in the British Context

Dr. Hyunsun Yoon (Ph.D. Cardiff University, Senior Lecturer in Advertising, School of Arts and Digital Industries, University of East London)

The flood of the Korean popular culture – films, pop music and especially TV dramas – into the rest of Asia around since the late 1990s became to be known as the Korean wave, and this has also been swiftly making its presence felt in other parts of the world such as Europe. This paper examines the ways in which the Korean wave has been, and is discussed in the mainstream media in the UK for the last decade. Considering the wide range of examples from Old Boy to Gangnam Style,this paper poses a question of whether or not the Korean wave found its way in seemingly impermeable British culture.

 

Korean Art:  Self Portrait

Jeremy Akerman (Artist and Curator, Co-director of Akermandaly.com)

Adopting the position of an observer I’d like to talk about my experience of art school and how I see art school in the UK working for a Korean art student. I will refer to the visits I’ve made to Korea as a tourist, curator and artist and why I find Korean people’s attitudes to Korea paradoxical and stimulating. Especially here I’d like to mention some Korean artists and an art collection that changed my mind about how I understood the country. A further point is to express the metaphor of self-portraiture within young Korean art and to suggest ways in which KCC can support and engage this vital new work.

 

Connecting UK & Korean Performing Arts

Sioned Hughes (Director, SRH Arts Management, specialises in international professional development of people across the arts and creative industries). 

 I will share the experience of a 2-year research exchange programme for Korean and UK performing arts managers that promoted and supported collaborative exchange between Korean and UK arts producers; developed performing arts professional networks between Korea and the UK and encouraged the development of artistic collaboration.

 

Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Anime… : Talk with Hirokatsu Kihara and Michihiko Suwa

18 January 2013 from 6.30pm

The Japan Foundation, London

Japanese animation has enthralled audiences worldwide and through its stories, concepts and visual splendour, the enchantment of the likes of Studio Ghibli and abundance of television series continue to captivate the imaginations of many. But how did such ideas come about, what is it that makes anime so distinct and original, and how has animation developed over the decades to become such a worldwide success?

The Japan Foundation has invited two of the most renowned figures in the industry behind this phenomenon, Hirokatsu Kihara and Michihiko Suwa, to introduce the real world of creating Japanese animation. Through Kihara’s involvement with early Studio Ghibli productions and the current subculture scene and manga, and Suwa’s role as Chief Producer at the Animation department of Yomiuri TV for anime franchises including Detective Conan(aka Case Closed), City Hunter and Inuyasha, they have helped realise a number of world-famous anime television series and movies during their illustrious careers. Despite their differing experiences, productions and working styles, Kihara and Suwa both hold a huge passion, understanding and vision for the medium, expressed through their work and activities.

Having witnessed the Japanese animation industry’s rise to the worldwide phenomenon, Kihara and Suwa will be joined by Helen McCarthy, journalist, author and anime expert, to explore the different sources of anime – both manga adaptations and originally crafted stories – and discuss their position in the Japanese animation industry, suggesting what the future holds for the medium. With Kihara’s experience of the celluloid-era of animation, and Suwa’s experience of its transition to digital, this event will also provide a fascinating insight into the ‘behind the scenes’ of anime production, telling the real story and history around the animated images.

Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Anime… : Talk with Hirokatsu Kihara and Michihiko Suwa

The end of the world did not materialise … so I’d like to invite the readers of this Blog to this interesting event.

Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Anime… : Talk with Hirokatsu Kihara and Michihiko Suwa

29 January 2013 from 6.30pm

The Japan Foundation, London

Japanese animation has enthralled audiences worldwide and through its stories, concepts and visual splendour, the enchantment of the likes of Studio Ghibli and abundance of television series continue to captivate the imaginations of many. But how did such ideas come about, what is it that makes anime so distinct and original, and how has animation developed over the decades to become such a worldwide success?

The Japan Foundation has invited two of the most renowned figures in the industry behind this phenomenon, Hirokatsu Kihara and Michihiko Suwa, to introduce the real world of creating Japanese animation. Through Kihara’s involvement with early Studio Ghibli productions and the current subculture scene and manga, and Suwa’s role as Chief Producer at the Animation department of Yomiuri TV for anime franchises including Detective Conan (aka Case Closed), City Hunter and Inuyasha, they have helped realise a number of world-famous anime television series and movies during their illustrious careers. Despite their differing experiences, productions and working styles, Kihara and Suwa both hold a huge passion, understanding and vision for the medium, expressed through their work and activities.

Having witnessed the Japanese animation industry’s rise to the worldwide phenomenon, Kihara and Suwa will be joined by Helen McCarthy, journalist, author and anime expert, to explore the different sources of anime – both manga adaptations and originally crafted stories – and discuss their position in the Japanese animation industry, suggesting what the future holds for the medium. With Kihara’s experience of the celluloid-era of animation, and Suwa’s experience of its transition to digital, this event will also provide a fascinating insight into the ‘behind the scenes’ of anime production, telling the real story and history around the animated images.

 This event is free to attend but booking is essential. To reserve a place, please email your name and the title of the event you would like to attend to event@jpf.org.uk

East-West encounters

Yesterday while I was reading a book I had bought few weeks ago I found few interesting paragraphs..

‘In sex, the comedy of misunderstanding between East and West is what arouses Wester men so much. But most fantasies are about strangers, not the people we live with. As tales, they are cruel, detached, anonymous; they revolve around submission, degradation, and symbolic rape.’……

‘Intentionally or otherwise, however, the East-West encounter is nearly always redeemed by being slightly comical, but it’s not a comedy which has any vicious intent. The Western man is not being mocked, nor is the Eastern woman. It is a difficult waltz to describe, but it could be called a quick, knowing dance of perfectly intentional ignorance. It’s a way of making sex innocent again’.

I’ve been thinking about my encounters with Eastern women…

I’m confused.

Rolling Home with a Bull

Korean Film Nights

 

6.30 PM, December 20, 2012

Apollo Cinema Piccadilly

 

Formerly known as “How to Travel with a Cow”
A bachelor poet lives in a remote area of Kang-won province. He goes to sell a cow but the price is too low. He gets a call from his former lover, who married his friend seven years ago. His friend has died, and she asks him to come to the funeral. He goes to the funeral with the cow. The man, the girl, and the cow leave on a journey.

My Primal Memory by Nao Matsunaga

Last few days for this very interesting exhibition.

19 October- 13 December, Monday – Friday, 9:30am – 5:00pm

Daiwa Foundation Japan House Gallery

In the exhibition My Primal Memory, Nao Matsunaga responds to his ideas and experiences of dual cultural and national identity, reflecting on his formative years growing up in Japan, and the latter part of his childhood in England. Although this is a deeply personal investigation, his work references ancient universal themes concerning the human condition.

…as people, we haven’t really changed at all over thousands of years, the way we interact, think and feel is still the same, even though the tools we use have changed.

By creating work using primal materials and tools, he connects on an emotional level with cultures from eras past, suggesting that there are certain constants in human behaviour that have not, and will not, change. With a sense of longing for a solid identity, Matsunaga attempts to find his way through the two cultures that make up his personality; responding to subconscious, primal drives in order to find a unifying whole.

Nao Matsunaga was born in Osaka in 1980, graduating with an MA in Ceramics and Glass from the Royal College of Art (2005–7) and he has exhibited internationally ever since. He has been presented with various awards and scholarships, such as the Jerwood Makers Open 2012, Cove Park Residency, the Anglo-Sweden Society Bursary and the Leverhume Trust’s grant. His works are in the public collection of the Crafts Council.  Matsunaga is  represented by Marsden Woo Gallery, London.