The Korean Cultural Society of Boston
~ 2022 ~
Korean Heritage Symposium 2022
Four First Thursdays at 7:30 pm (EST)
March 3: Bojagi (Korean Wrapping Cloth) - recording
Former Critic in RISD (retired); Founded Bojagi Forum, organizing bi-annual bojagi exhibition
Bojagi is the Korean traditional embroidery , costumes and wrapping cloths, which are very interesting modes of expression in dye textiles and embroidery work varied according to family custom and use. The bold freedom from self -consciousness that suppresses personal desires, restraint , exaggero and hidden humor in the textile art of Korean women includes infinite beauty and mystery.
April 7: Han-ji (Korean Traditional Paper) - recording
Majored in Asian Paining
Co-authored <Let’s go and watch winds, Sunwoo> (선우야, 바람 보러 가자) with his wife KyungOk Lee, meditator.
Joungkuk Lee will introduce the process of creating traditional Korean paper (Han-ji), his own artistic world, and community education with diverse application of Han-ji.
The presentation is in video with English subtitle.
June 2: Gugaki (Korean Traditional Instruments) - recording
Researcher, National Gugak Center)
M.Music (Ethnomusicology) Goldsmiths University of London
Soojung Shin guides Gugak Museum through VR and explores how artistic and philosophical aspects are embedded in ritual instruments preserved in the National Gugak Center in Korea. To understand the musical instruments used in court, and will illustrate unique features and meanings and were represented by the colors and animals: pyeon-gyeong, pyeonjong, banghyang, teukjong, teukgyeong, geon-go, jin-go, nogo, yeonggo, noego, nodo, yeongdo and noedo, chuk, eo and bu.
July 7: Minwha (Korean Folk Painting) [Rescheduled from May 5] - recording
Specializes in pre-modern and early 20th-century Korean art and culture.
Associate Prof., Dartmouth College
Tigers in Korean Folk Painting
In Korea, the tiger has been closely associated with its land, people, and culture. The map of Korea was seen as a crouching tiger while Koreans see themselves identified with tiger. In this talk, Prof. Kim explores Korea's long historical, cultural, and visual association with the tiger. Various thematic presentations of the tigers in Joseon painting will be examined to understand the development of Korean folk paintings, especially Tiger and Magpies.
Korean Family Month Celebration Program
Concord Free Public Library, Concord, MA
Sponsored by The Friends of the Concord Free Public Library
Exhibition of Minwha (Korean Folk Painting): May 3 – 31
Minwha (Korean Folk Arts) depicts customs, habits, ways of life in ordinary Koreans and includes yearning for life: yearning for happiness and long life, for luck and wealth, for marital harmony, etc. Images from nature such as flowers, trees, butterflies, fishes, as tigers as well as household items such as brush, book, porcelain, furniture, etc. are interwoven and bring out unique Korean beauty. Sometimes, Minwha carries sarcastic twists to the strictly hierarchical society. In exhibition are works by Seongmin Ahn from New York, Insun Cho, Sunhee Hur, and Jaeok Lee.
Children’s program: Korean Art and Craft: Saturday, May 14 – 2:00-4:00 PM
· Clay cookie with Korean patterns
· Book reading (30-40 min; A cut-out of a Korean dress for picture taking)
· Color paper folding
· Korean children's games
Sijo Poetry Workshop: Saturday, May 14, 2:30-4:00 pm
Prof. David McCann of Harvard Univ. (emeritus) will present a workshop on Sijo, the Korean vernacular counterpart to the Japanese haiku. The sijo is an interesting verse form, with strong performance aspects, much like today’s K-pop. Its three lines can also be seen as a good example for analysis and essay writing, as it unfolds with an Introducti0on in the first line, Development in the second, and then a rhetorical Turn to start the third line, and the Conclusion.
Traditional Music Concert: Saturday, May 21, 7:00 PM
Kyung-sun Kim: Gayageum (12-string instrument)
Isabelle Rhee: Janggu (percussion)
Yoona Kim: Ajaeng (string and bow)
Dr. Mina Cho: Jazz (keyboard)
Three Korean traditional instruments - Gayageum(12-string instrument), Janggu (drum) and Ajaeng (string instrument with a bow) - were performed by Kyung Sun Kim, Jihye Park and Yoona Kim. Also, Dr. Mina Cho, the founder of the 'International Gugak jazz Institute', added fun by improvising on the piano with Yoona Kim.
Samulnori Fantasy: Seasons
Saturday, September 10 at 7:30 pm
New England Conservatory's Jordan Hall
290 Huntington Ave, Boston, MA
"Samulnori Fantasy: Seasons" is the second creation by Mina Cho in the style of the Pansori Cantata which takes a narrative into the form of Korean traditional Pansori [storytelling in voice] with Samulnori [four primary percussion instruments – Jing (big gong), Janggu (drum), Kkwaenggwari (small gong), and Buk (barrel drum)]. Samulnori is a contemporary counterpart of Korean Pungmul (a Korean folk music tradition rooted in the collective farming culture called ‘Dure’) and Namsadang (an itinerant traditional performing arts troupe). Throughout, the piece interweaves Korean traditional music with the sounds of modern jazz and Gospel music.
Seasons features a moon rabbit 'Rain,' whose singing has the power to call forth the rain, and a young woman 'Sunnie,' who studies business in Boston, having abandoned her dream of becoming a master Pansori singer. After celebrating his retirement from 100 years of musical priesthood in Lunar Land, Rain is allowed to travel to the Human World, but for only one night of the full moon. A magical pathway, named 7th Moonstar Street, appears between Lunar Land and the Charles River for Rain’s trip. Upon reaching the Charles River, he meets Sunnie. Powerfully inspired through music and conversation, Rain and Sunnie begin to explore their passion for music and embrace a new season in their lives.
Program is available here.
~ 2021 ~
Korean Heritage Symposium
September 9 - Han-sik (Korean Food): Dr. Sangyoub Park
Food is a connection to the past and a bridge to the future. Recently, hansik, Korean cuisine - as known as K-Food now - is very popular in the U.S. thanks to a combination of the government of S. Korea’s culinary diplomacy and the global success of K-Pop, especially BTS’ global phenomenon. This growing popularity of K-Food is a great opportunity to celebrate Korean heritage by sharing K-Food. In this talk, I will explore why and how to use K-Food (e,g, bibimbap, japchae, various banchan) to raise cultural awareness. In particular, I will share how the recent project, Tasting Korea, celebrated Korean heritage at the local farmers market. Sangyoub Park is Associate Professor of Sociology at Washburn University.
October 7 - Han-ok (Korean Architecture): Dr. Yongchan Kwon
In this talk, the focus of Hanok is on its traditional building and habitat. As a representative example, Hahoe Folk Village was registered in UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites in 2010 along with Yangdong village. Located in Andong, the village is a valuable part of Korean culture because it preserves Joseon period style architecture, folk traditions, valuable books, and tradition of clan-based villages. The village is organized around the geomantic guidelines of pungsu (Korean feng shui) and the village has the shape of a lotus flower. We will take a glimpse of the overall value of Hanok as a well-built environment for humans.
November 4 - Han-bok (Korean Dresses): Dress of Korean Identity: Dr. Minjee Kim
This talk will shed light on the inception of the term “hanbok” and the composition of the ensembles for men and women, and its constant transformation in the context of modern Korean fashion history. Then it will overview contemporary hanbok ensembles for new-born babies, children, young and middle age adults, as well as weddings, burials, and funerals. This talk will not only enhance general understanding of what hanbok is, but also provoke further thinking on the historical relationship between local and global fashion, modernity and tradition, and meanings of dress for all of us.
~ 2020 ~
The 7th Annual Sebae re-enactment
February 1, 11 am - 4 pm
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MA
MFA (Museum of Fine Arts in Boston) opens its door for free on Saturday, February 1 to celebrate Lunar New Year. KCSB participates in the celebration with Chinese and Vietnamese cultural organization, and perform re-enactment of SeBae (세배), a bowing ceremony to elders.
Also, Korean Traditional and Contemporary dances will be performed in Alfond Auditorium.
Garam Gugak Ensemble
University of Mass, Amherst, MA
Garam Gugak Competition is one of the most prestigious competitions in Korea, and these musicians are exceptionally virtuosic artists. They will present the quintessential traditional Korean music genres including sinawi (an instrumental chamber ensemble), pansori (a vocal narrative genre), sanjo (an instrumental solo improvisational genre), namdo japga (a collection of southern folksongs for professional pansori singers), as well as contemporary compositions.
The Garam Ensemble concert is co-sponsored by Korean Student Association in UMass Amherst and Korean Cultural Service of Mass.
~ 2019 ~
Festival of Dance & GuGak
Sunday, September 29, 3 PM
Jordan Hall, New England Conservatory, Boston, MA
Gugak is inherently improvisatory, and can be seamlessly played next to classical, jazz, and contemporary music. Six Gugak masters (Tae-baek Lee, Ji-young Yi, Wan-chul Won, Hyeun-bin Lim, Tae-young Kim) from Korea opens up a rare performance of authentic as well as contemporary collaboration with Boston Ballet artists (principals Seo Hye Han and John Lam), cellist (Kari Juusela), and Korean Traditional Dance Group (three-drum dance).
The complete program is available here, along with an article in Boston Musical Intelligencer by Prof. Judith Eissenberg in Brandeis University and Boston Conservatory.
K-Arts Dance Festival
Thursday, December 19, 7:30 PM
Scottish Rite Masonic Museum & Library, Lexington, MA
Fourteen dancers from the K-Arts Dance Company in the Korea University of Arts showcase traditional and modern dances. Five graduates of K-Arts University are currently active in Boston Ballet, including two principals, and other graduates such as Kimin Kim of the Mariinsky Ballet are active all over the world.
The complete program is available here.