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Samcheong-dong, Jongno-gu, Seoul, South Korea
One's visit to Seoul would not be complete without understanding its rich history by seeing both historical and contemporary sights. As designers on vacation, my friends and I have tailored an itinerary that would embrace both culture and art through architecture, design, and of course, food! In this series, I wish to take you along with me and show you the old and new Seoul. I hope that through this lineup of places and photographs, you will be inspired to explore and see more of Seoul.
Bukchon Hanok Village is a beautiful place that exudes the Traditional Korean Folk charm. Still preserving the sense of culture and community, Bukchon is a home for Traditional Korean Art, Lifestyle, and the like. If you are looking for a sense of tradition and history while in Seoul, this place is definitely a must-visit for you!

My friends and I were able to walk around the place and get to see some traditional houses that were open to the public. One should truly see and admire the craftsmanship given and dedicated to building these houses. The details of joinery, construction of eaves and roof systems, down to the very combination of textures through material and color choices, it is truly an example of a vernacular design that would last through a test of time.
Samcheongdong is also a beautiful and charming place to see. Still preserving most of the old Korean Architectural elements in their new structures, this place is a perfect example of adaptive community and design. If you are a cafe and art lover, there are so many stores and activities to see in Samcheongdong. It is also a neighborhood strategically located near the Bukchon Hanok Village and the Gyeongbukgung Palace.
I had to capture this because it's somehow very relative to the present setting. An Ahjussi (uncle) sits by a bench and quietly observes the people and the scenery in front of him while a young man sits on the bench next to him fiddling with his tablet, earphones on. 
After you go to Samcheongdong and have a nice traditional Korean meal, walk it off and visit the National Museum of Modern Contemporary Art, Kukje Gallery, and even the Gyeongbukgung Palace.
The NMMCA's Architecture was meant to be of understated design. The Lead Architect, Mihn Yun Jun wanted the MMCA to coexist with the community for it to become a backdrop of tradition and culture, respecting the fact that it is right in front of the Historical Gyeongbukgung Palace and that its very soil housed the Office of the Royal Family Affairs during the Joseon Dynasty.
Madang is a Korean term for creating open spaces. The MMCA has a lot of open spaces that exhibit the beautiful play of lights and shadows especially in late afternoons. The buildings are interconnected through the passages in the basement level.
 Kukje Gallery is located near MMCA. The concept of Kukje is very unique and veers away from the traditional approach of MMCA's. Although modernist in form and function, Kukje celebrates Modern Korean art and Architecture.

Kukje has 3 buildings (K1) which have a deconstructive approach of the facade, (K2), and the very famous and photogenic (K3) which is famous for its very unique mesh veil.
I failed to snap a photo of K2's facade. Something to look forward to when I come back! In the meantime, here are my photos of K3:
Obligatory emo tourist shot. I just had to! Taken by my best friend Na Ri Yim
K3's Interior is very plain and embraces a lot of Natural light. Here's Na Ri checking out one of the artworks exhibited during the time we visited.

More photos on the next Seoul Photo Journal!

Happy Heyday!


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