Thursday, September 17, 2015

Korean Art, Craft & Culture books .....



During my recent stay in Korea I found a few books on Korean Crafts, Arts and Culture in English that I'd like to share with you.


The first one is 'Treasures from Korea, Arts and Culture of the Joseon Dynasty, 1392 - 1910'.  

This book was produced to coincide with an exhibition of the same name which started at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, in the US in March 2014 and ended up at the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston in January of this year.

It isn't about Hanji but it does give a good insight into the life and times of this era and I was especially interested in the paintings that  are often incorporated into Hanji pieces.

Here's an example: 





'Tiger under a pine tree' printed onto Hanji paper
Tiger under a pine tree used on a Hanji lamp

Next is 'Korean Handicrafts - Art in Everyday life'  which is jointly published by the Korea Foundation and Seoul Selection to give  international readers a basic understanding of Korean Arts and Culture.  It's a small book, No. 20 in a series entitled, Korea Essentials. It has some good links to Craft Related Organisations in Korea including the Korea Craft and Design Organisation (KCDF) which is a public institution of the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism.


Lastly I was very excited when Ifound a book called, '100 Thimbles in a box - The Spirit and Beauty of Korean Handicrafts' by Debbie Kent and Joan Suwalsky. The authors are both Korean adoptee parents and there wish was for this book to be a resource,  for people around the world, on Korea's unique handicrafts  and for Koreans, as a reminder of their rich heritage.

This is one of the most beautifully produced books I've seen for a long time, the photography is stunning, the colours are rich and the pages just jump out at you urging you to turn to the next page to discover something new.


There's a lovely section on Hanji paper and its uses and lots of references to Hanji throughout the book.



I'll add these to my ever growing collection of books and I've got lots of reading to get on with now as I treasure my new finds.