Aug. 14, 2015 / Issue No. 696
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Celebrate 70 Years of Independence with the Korean Flag
Seoul Selection’s “Taegeukgi: The Korean Flag Throughout History” is a visual exploration of a national symbol

Saturday marks 70 years since Korea’s liberation from Japanese colonial rule. Seoul will be hosting several event tonight and on Saturday at the Sejong Center and Gwanghwamun Plaza. Seoul Selection Bookshop, too, will be open on Saturday afternoon (2 to 6 PM), too.

Seoul Selection would also like to suggest another way to celebrate this historic day – by picking up a copy of our recently released “Taegeukgi: The Korean Flag Throughout History.” The accordion book is a compilation of 42 historical images of the Korean flag assembled by U.S.-based collector Lee Byung Kun, an IT specialist who has amassed roughly 800 Korean-flag related items since 2009.

Fluttering against the backdrop of the blue sky, the Korean flag, or Taegeukgi, evokes feelings of not only respect and joy but also of sadness. Born as a symbol of national independence, the emblem emerged in the late 19th century at a time when Korea was being threatened by imperialist invasion. The flag, along with the people it represents, witnessed the rise and fall of the Daehan Empire, the theft of national sovereignty by Imperial Japan, the independence movement, liberation from colonial rule and the Korean War.

Read more about the book here.

PRICE: KRW 8,000



A miscellany of high-quality hyperlinks from the week, courtesy of SEOUL editor-in-chief Robert Koehler



Aeroport Mille Plateaux

PLATEAU, Samsung Museum of Art presents Aeroport Mille Plateaux, a major solo exhibition by the artist duo Elmgreen & Dragset. Inspired by the confluence of PLATEAU’s unique glass and steel architecture and the ideas of Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari’s landmark book, Mille Plateaux (1980), the exhibition transforms the museum into a fictional airport aligning art, philosophy, and everyday space into a unified perspective. Connecting the rhizomatic character of an airport as a “non-place” with the concept of “plateau”, Aeroport Mille Plateaux examines our contemporary space and identity as temporary and nomadic, anonymous and hybrid, intermediary and consumable, all at once.

DATE: Thru Oct. 18
GETTING THERE: 5 minute walk from Exit 8 of City Hall Station (Line 1, 2)

Marronier Summer Festival

Daehangno’s Marronier Park, the center of Daehangno’s theater district, is hosting a weekend of outdoor performances. In particular, be sure to check out Shakespeare’s Globe’s performance of Hamlet on Aug. 15 and 16 at 7:30 PM.

VENUE: Marronier Park
PERIOD: Thru. Aug. 16
MORE INFO: See this link.
GETTING THERE: Hyehwa Station (Line 4), Exit 2

Kansong Munhwa- the Scent of a Scholar

In the days of the Joseon Dynasty, the apricot, orchid, chrysanthemum and bamboo were called the “Four Gentlemen,” and they represented not just the four seasons, but also particular virtues Confucian gentlemen sought to cultivate. As such, the flowers featured prominently in the period’s art. This exhibit features flower paintings from mostly Joseon Dynasty artists, including painters such as Yi Jung, Kim Jeong-hui, Kim Soo-chul and even Heungseon Daewongun, Korea’s powerful prince regent of the late 19th century.

VENUE: Dongdaemun Design Plaza
PERIOD: Thru. Aug. 30
MORE INFO: T. 02-2153-0000
GETTING THERE: Dongdaemun History & Culture Park Station (Line 2, 4 or 5), Exit 1 or 2.

Shinan Bank’s Foreign Language Call Center

Make use of Shinhan Bank’s phone banking service (T. 1577-8380) for foreigners at anytime, anywhere. Service available in English, Japanese, Chinese and other foreign languages.

MORE INFO: T. 1577-8380,

Spend a Late Summer Day at the Dragon Hill Spa

There’s no better place to escape the heat and humidity of August than Yongsan’s Dragon Hill Spa, Korea’s best loved health resort.

Dragon Hill Spa is a one-stop leisure emporium, with saunas, pools, tanning facilities, massage rooms and top-quality restaurants bound to revive your heat-oppressed tastebuds.

MORE INFO:,, T. 02-792-0001
GETTING THERE: Yongsan Station (Line 1)

RASKB Excursion: Independence Day Excursion

Join the RAS-KB for a very patriotic excursion to Hyeonchungsa, Onyang Folk Museum and Independence Memorial Hall. Hyeonchungsa is a shrine to Korea’s greatest war hero, the 16th century admiral Yi Sun-sin. Onyang Folk Museum, meanwhile, is home to 14,000 artifacts depicting Korean traditional lifestyles and folklore. Finally, Cheonan’s Independence Memorial Hall is a massive complex dedicated to the Korean independence movement during the dark days of Japanese colonial rule.

VENUE: Chungcheongnam-do
DATE: Aug. 15, 8 AM-8 PM
ADMISSION: KRW 42,000 for members, KRW 50,000 for non-members
MORE INFO and GETTING THERE: See this link.


Carvings in Mureung Rock, Mureung Valley, Donghae, Gangwon-do. Photo by Robert Koehler.


Seoul Selection’s Free Book Giveaway – Our free book give-away continues! Check out the list in last week’s newsletter here.

Seoul Selection Offline Bookshop Sale  One of the greatest repositories of Korea-related English-language books anywhere, Seoul Selection is offering a 10% sale on any and all books published by Seoul Selection purchased from our OFFLINE bookshop next to Gyeongbokgung Palace.

Looking for Translators – Seoul Selection is looking for a few good translators (Korean to English) for general translation work. Those interested should send a resume and cover letter to Kyehyun at Experienced translators only.

Seoul Selection eBooks – You can purchase some Seoul Selection titles in ebook format via (for Kindle) and Apple’s iBookstore. Titles include Ask a Korean Dude, Moon Tides, Doing Business in Korea, Once Around the Sun, and seven volumes of our Korean Film Directors series: BONG Joon-ho, IM Kwon-taek, KIM Jee-woon, LEE Chang-dong, LEE Man-hee, PARK Chan-wook, and SHIN Sang-ok.

Send Your Event Info – If you would like to advertise any upcoming events you are organizing, please send us the press release material at by the preceding Friday in order for it to appear in the following Tuesday’s issue.

Freelance Contributors Wanted – SEOUL Magazine needs writers who are fluent in both Korean and English. Writers should have a strong interest in Korean culture and be able to interview Koreans. Send your resume and writing samples to


SEOUL (August 2015)

Buy Books at Seoul Selection’s ONLINE Bookshop!



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