Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Discovering Korea’s “Hermit Kingdom” Through Its Art

The Joseon Dynasty ruled over Korea for more than half a millennium, stretching from 1392, when horses were still the main means of travel, to 1910, the dawn of the age of flight. Overshadowed (and sometimes invaded) by neighboring China and Japan, Korea maintained its unique culture and arts until the late 19th century, when the West finally made inroads into what became known as the “hermit kingdom.” A new, unprecedented exhibition at the Philadelphia Museum of Art titled Treasures from Korea: Arts and Culture of the Joseon Dynasty, 1392–1910 retells the story of that dynasty through more than 150 works, including many Korean national treasures that have never before left their native land. Walking among the remnants of people steeped in the simplicity of Neo-Confucianism yet still marked by the grandeur of kings, you feel yourself transported not just to a different place and time but to a whole new state of being. This rediscovery of Korea’s “hermit kingdom” through its art will bring you out of your own cultural shell. Please come over to Picture This at Big Think to read more of "Discovering Korea’s “Hermit Kingdom” Through Its Art."

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