When it comes to art and cultural developments in Korea, I must admit that I know very little. Given that the bulk of international media attention is directed at North Korea (and not for particularly good reasons, mind you), Korea’s art life is, unfortunately, often neglected. Thankfully, Canadian expatriate Katie Merchant has created the blog thank you, ok to showcase the best aspects of life in South Korea. Photographically documenting cafés, street art, quaint boutiques and miscellaneous happenings – predominantly located in Seoul – Merchant’s blog is a multifaceted postcard that journeys into the nooks and crannies of her adopted home.
The true triumph of thank you, ok is that it is curated in such a manner that it immediately makes you want to hop on a plane and visit the city. There are no boring bits or clichéd tourist information, just superb images and great tips. Needless to say, if I ever take a trip to South Korea I will be drawing on her recommendations to help guide me through Seoul.
“The series DestructConstruct is based on found photographs of shipping container accidents downloaded from the Internet. Each found image is used as a model for a sculpture that is constructed for the production of the photograph. [...] This process transforms the containers into pristine patterns of color and shape, thereby confusing scale and altering the perception of the shipping container as an object. The paper is now seen as fragile, crushed or torn due to an unknown circumstance.”
Incidentally, her work was featured in a recent publication: Unfolded, Paper in Design, Art, Architecture and Industry. Among the other artists featured in the book are Frank Gehry and Thomas Demand.
For me, the word “tourist” has always given a slightly negative impression: I immediately think of loud and obtrusive foreigners sporting knee-high socks and sandals with neon-coloured bum bags (I believe you call them fanny packs in the States) tightly wound around their waists, as they cart around expensive cameras they don’t know how to use and large maps they probably don’t know how to read. Not the most appealing of images, I admit.
Brushing aside these unpleasant associations, Tourist Magazine is a new and exciting online magazine based in the United Kingdom. With four issues under its publishing belt, the magazine showcases a heady mix of art, fashion, interviews, music and cultural features; all accompanied by intelligent writing and gorgeous imagery. In particular, there is a raw and unpretentious aesthetic to Tourist Magazine that I really appreciate. As someone who is not overly interested in reading about cosmetic procedures, tips on how to snag a man or the latest celebrity gossip – the standard fare for many magazines – it is refreshing to come across a magazine focused on collaborating with diverse creatives types in an inspiring and fresh way.
I’m not really sure what exactly this is about but what I’ve determined that it’s a collaboration from Helmo and Bonnefrite for Pronomade(s) and they’re amazing. I honestly have no idea who any of these people are but the results are fantastic. The images above totally remind me of something you’d see in a Hayao Miyazaki movie, a giant spirit that is there but not at the same time. Also think the photos were by François Serveau who did an amazing job of capturing these landscapes. You can check out more of these awesome image by clicking here.
Lately I’ve been having this hang up with prints. I understand it’s an easier way for artists, and by artists I mean illustrators and designers, to present their work. But at the same time it’s starting to feel like more crap. I’ve started comparing prints to screen printed t-shirts, which in my mind no one needs anymore of. That said, I can’t say that this ridiculous rule I’ve created for myself holds true to photographers, because, how else would they show their work other than a print?
So I thought I’d share this wonderful image created by Paul Octavious called The Beach which is the quintessential idea of what summer looks like (to me). The photo is available through Wallblank who are charging $30 for a 12″ x 12″ or $70 for a 20″ x 20″. I’m seriously smitten with this print so I’m thinking about diving into the 20″ end of the pool.