Sundays with the Arts

A weekly show of events, interviews, exploration, and discussion.

Reviews of events
2010 was a stellar year for me for art and performances. How was your experience?

The community art scene at GIC was spectacular. Both My Life in Gwangju (photos) and My Cultural Experience in Gwangju resulted in great personal and communal art exhibited by GIC Gallery (formerly known as GAIA Gallery) as well as an exhibit at the Asia Culture Forum. The talented international volunteer leaders for these programs were Sara Epp and Lisa Mynhardt. GIC volunteers JiHyun Kim and Soeun Moon were awesome in getting things accomplished for so many participants.

Additionally, I didn’t have to travel too far from home to experience some great art and music. The photography, jewelry design and graphic design graduate exhibitions at Gwangju University were wonderful examples of artists getting ready to launch into the world. The music selections were stunning – especially in the fall season. Offering a great start in September with a string ensemble as well as a grand piano recital (8 pianos at once – great acoustics in the Hoshimkwan auditorium) as well as an opera, things only got better culminating in a week long graduate festival of voice and instrument recitals.

Independent Art Exploration in Gwangju
Things to do in Gwangju this week.

On snowy cold days, head for a local museum and check out their exhibits. Gwangju Museum of Art has a great location. In the middle of the Biennale grounds in Yongbongdong (take bus 64 or 83) it’s a lovely scene to take in, snow covered and frosty, before you enter the museum. For obekwon (500 won) you get to look at some really great artwork. Check out Ha Jung Woong’s Prayer collection. The exhibit of Vietnam art as well as the Keith Haring exhibit are still going on. Check out Gwangju city’s Story website for some details of things to do in the same neighborhood.

Social Discourse
New year resolutions and an empty Gwangju. While Gwangju News has the most pages ever, 56 pages of content, it will be read by only a few people. The vacation and exodus of another EFL teaching season has been going on since the middle of December. The First Alleyway closed its doors during the holiday season and reopens January 5. This ebb and flow has become quite natural to me. It is part of my life cycle. What cycles do you experience in your life in Gwangju? Please share in the comment section.

Disquiet
Things that hit us in the solar plexus and how to dissipate the disquiet they evoked.

One of the things that drives me crazy is the public spitting that goes on. Now granted I live on a university campus near the boys’ dormitory, but even downtown and even girls I encounter do way too much horking and evidence of that guttural sound. Nothing is worse that to be standing at a crosswalk or a bus stop and someone coughs up a luge and then drop the spittle from their lips. One afternoon downtown three 20 something dudes were have a spit fight into ongoing traffic.

While I can sympathize with the discomfort of a stuffed up head and sinus drainage, I really don’t want to see it or hear it. I’m sure the countrified adage of ‘better out than in’ is healthy, but in Singapore it would get you arrested.

To solve this sense of disquiet I have always dreamed of making a movie/ PSA (public service announcement). Have a hork followed by an arrest by the spit police. The spit police would be short people like me, who are near the ground and have to look at the heinous result of the horker up close. Then ending with a  street sweeper getting their traditional straw broom stuck in a sidewalk awash with hork. And the message would be “Spitting is a social disease.  Please stop inflecting others.”

Please improve upon my idea by sharing in the comments. Or collaborate with me in making my movie. Or perhaps we can have a public space to ‘out’ horkers by posting videos of them online.

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We would like to turn this post into a podcast with links. Would you like to get involved?
We are looking for links to reviews of the previous week’s events, live interviews with artists, organizers and participants, links for art things to do in Gwangju for the next week, as well as reflective questions and problems that we can invite the community to discuss online.

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