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[SDF]“A Collection for Korea,” a Special Kansong Exhibition celebrating the centennial of the March 1 Movement, to be held free of charge on March 1
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2019-02-26

“A Collection for Korea,” a Special Kansong Exhibition celebrating the centennial of the March 1 Movement, to be held free of charge on March 1

 

- To be held with free admission on March 1 to commemorate 100th anniversary of the March 1 Movement.

- Embodies the patriotic spirit of Chun Hyung-pil, an educator who did everything in his power to protect Posung High School (a key institution of the March 1 Movement).

- An opportunity to see many of the Korean cultural heritage assets that were saved from Japanese pilfering, including a book of Jeong Seon’s paintings that was almost used as kindling material in the home of a pro-Japanese collaborator.

- Exhibition to be the final project of the five-year collaboration between Seoul Design Foundation and Kansong Art and Culture Foundation.

 

□ The year 2019 is a special year in Korea: it marks the centennial of the March 1 Movement, which was a nationwide series of demonstrations that were held for the shared purpose of resisting Japanese colonial rule and calling for Korean independence. To commemorate the historic significance of 2019, A Collection for Korea (“Daehan Collection,” Special Kansong Exhibition for the Centennial of the March 1 Movement), an exhibition co-hosted by the Seoul Design Foundation (CEO Choi Kyung-ran) and Kansong Art and Culture Foundation (Chairman Chun Young-woo), will be held with free admission on March 1 (Friday).

 

□ The exhibition will be held free of charge for one day to allow as many citizens as possible to commemorate the efforts made by Chun Hyung-pil to protect Posung High School, a key institution involved in the March 1 Movement that was itself a cultural heritage asset, and the process through which he collected cultural heritage assets over the course of his life.

● The philosophy of Posung High School’s founding motto, “Sustaining the country by making schools,” was maintained by Lee Yong-ik, the school’s founder; Sohn Byeong-hee, a major leader of the March 1 Movement; Song Gye-baek, a Posung alumnus who served as a link between the February 8 Independence Declaration and March 1 Movement for Korean students in Japan; and finally Chun Hyung-pil, who dedicated his life to the protection of Korean culture and educational development as a means of advancing the “minjok spirit.”

 All 35,000 copies of the Independence Declaration, which was distributed nationwide prior to the March 1 Movement, were printed at a printing office inside Posung High School. In 1920, the number of graduates dropped by over 50 percent due to the imprisonment and withdrawal of students who participated actively in the independence movement.

 

□ The exhibition will highlight many dramatic incidents that resulted from the efforts of Chun, renowned as a protector of cultural relics in Korea, to protect national treasures from colonial pilfering as well as his dedication as an educator to protect Korea’s history and independence, which was at the center of the March 1 Movement, from being distorted and lost. There will also be a display of some personal items of Chun’s.

● This exhibition aims to introduce visitors to the efforts made by Chun during the Japanese colonial period to achieve his vision for Korea’s future. It will display not only six National Treasures, eight Treasures, items of Goryeo celadon, Joseon white celadon, calligraphic works by Kim Jeong-hui, and paintings by Jeong Seon but also Goryeo celadon that Chun picked up himself in Tokyo after years of attempts to recover them, a book of Jeong Seon’s paintings that was almost reduced to ashes (in an attempt to use it as kindling material by a pro-Japanese sympathizer), and a story about how Chun secured an item of Joseon white celadon after an intense competition at an art auction in Tokyo with a major Japanese collector.

● The exhibition will also reveal Chun’s earnest desire to preserve Korea’s independence, even amid Japanese persecution, through his takeover and operation of Posung High School.

 

□ This is the 13th and final exhibition featured by the Kansong Art and Culture Foundation at the DDP since its first exhibition The Treasures of Kansong: Preserving National Identity Through Culture, which was featured in March 2014 to celebrate the foundation’s anniversary.

● A Collection for Korea, the last of the Special Kansong Exhibitions, will not only feature the National Treasures, Treasures, and artifacts that Chun recovered from the Japanese colonial government and preserved for Korea’s future, but also explain how Chun took over Posung High School, which was founded specifically to produce individuals capable of serving their country.

● The 24 ceramic works that will be displayed, which include Goryeo celadon and Joseon white celadon, will not be displayed again until the renovations of Kansong Art Museum (Seongbuk-dong, Seoul) are complete.

 

□ Through this exhibition, the Kansong Art and Culture Foundation hopes that visitors can learn more about Chun’s love for his country, which went beyond his dedication to collecting and preserving cultural heritage assets to his desire for the spirit embodied by such assets to be passed down to future generations.


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