Jeju Museum of Art 제주도립미술관

A short walk next door to Loveland is the Jeju Museum of Art.

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I love art museums and museums in general. The Jeju Museum of Art surprised me because it did something I hadn’t seen before. Most art museums put things together in specific ways. Whether it’s all of a movement like an Impressionist room or a collection of Frida Kahlo’s work there tends to be a usual system, and while maybe there was this similar system at the Jeju Museum Art what impressed me was the way they set it up. They extended the frames of the arts to the wall and the lighting, each section was a different color and depending on the mood of the art, the lighting changed. I didn’t fully grasp it until I turned a corner from bright yellow fully lit area into a corner that led to a dim section with a darker almost black background.

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It was delighting. The museum turned itself into art, letting the feeling or mood of the art spread out onto the walls and the light. I’m sure it changes the experience and the way someone experiences the art. It was refreshing.

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This was in their general gallery. The did have a special exhibit upstairs by the artist Kang Kwang 강광 entitled “나는 고향으로 간다” or “I go home”. If there was an exhibit that crawled under my skin that I wished I could have prints of, it would be this one.

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While some of the art was colorful and bright with cool patterns, others made you pause and think. They were much more visceral.

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Like a nightmare that had found itself captured on canvas, it is a kind of art that I feel like I don’t see a lot of. It tells a rather dark story. And again, the set up of the exhibit was vastly interesting, such as when I entered a small hallway to see a painting of a single creature heading down a path under a red moon and then turned to see a mirror painting where suddenly instead of one creature in the distance there was many many more and all much closer.

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The juxtaposition was unnerving and I found myself frozen for half a second as the art crawled under my skin. Again, I ended up loving it. Advertised in the pamphlet for the exhibit was some art that was a criticism on world politics and history however we couldn’t find these on display. Sadly this exhibit will be over by the time this post goes up, since it ends in the beginning of October, but I’m glad I had a chance to see the works of this Jeju artist.

Tickets for the museum are 2,000 won per adult. The museum is open from 9am until 6pm (depending on the time of year. Last call for tickets is at 5:30pm.

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