Tuesday, December 6, 2011

The Best Definition of "Korea's Dark Side" (Dan Perjovschi)

You know how people say "beauty through simplicity"?
I realized it when I read an article about how apple did not design the iPad,
If you break the iPad down, it boils down to one flat, square box.
It's nothing fancy.
But the trick to beauty through simplicity is that you kind of do need to elaborate it
INTERNALLY, not externally.
Elaborate its apps, sound systems, touch key pads, sensors, memories,
not their shapes, colors, and fancy decorations where bunch of shiny keyboards
and mouses are drooling and hanging down from the iPad.

*panting*... need.... to breath..... 
Said too much in one breath.

speaking of beauty through simplicity,
I saw this art exhibition recently by

Dan Perjovschi!!!

in Pyongchang, one of the richest place in Korea.

He is such a bad ass!!!
This is official homepage btw:

He's the genius of doodling.
I know doodling sounds really easy and mediocre,
but he gets pretty creative with it.
He makes the common doodling "THE Doodling".

Here we go :)

Oh, before we jump in...
He's been staying in Korea for 3 months, and his exhibition this time
is about what he felt and saw in Korea.
You'll find some very sharp and direct points that he wants to make
about Korean society, government, economy, and daily life.
I know. Way to but the most important information in a BTW section, right?
But sometimes my readers won't pay attention to my not-BTW's :'(
(failing excuse of mine...)

How you interpret art is all up to you, so please keep in mind that
what I say is all just my point of view and my opinion.

The picture below says that houses, cars, and even trees are owned
by banks. Sun is the only thing that's free.
Oh, God. So true...
Isn't it kind of true in the U.S., too?
Gosh darn it, Banks! Get it right!!! >:(

Oh, two people making a fair deal, right?
Yeah, Korea's all fair and just and nice like that, folks.

Look under the bar where the two people's hands are.
I think he's pointing out bribery and "planned" trade, of which are a couple of
Korea's flaws.
I mean, not all are like that, but you know, governments all over the country
have their own flaws and strengths.

Ugg boots in summer?
Actually, it has only been 3 months and 1 week since I came back to Korea,
so I didn't really get a chance to experience Korean summer yet,
but really?
Ugg boots in summer?
... Ew.
I don't want to imagine what my feet will smell like or even feel like...
But yeah, I think it's true that some Korean fashion looks like it came from Jupiter.

Just to explain the picture, he's standing on his dream (already written in the picture).
You can see though, that the person's only on one foot, and his/her
balance isn't too stable.
I think it shows how hard it is to keep your dream alive in a Korean society
especially because you're taught to study, study, and study and that
your entire life is about going to Ivy league colleges.
Dreams are not directly discouraged,
but I feel like it is certainly indirectly put down,
and I think indirect suggestion is stronger than a direct discouragement.

This was the basement, where people could freely watch his art works.
It was pretty convenient.
This kind of looks like an art work itself because
of the contrast you can see between his simple drawings
and relatively more elaborately dressed Koreans.
(Maybe his understatement is that Korea is a little too much about looking good?
I mean... look at all these girls getting plastic surgery before going to college...!
And how everyone's much about looking pretty by dressing up and putting tons of makeup.)

This one's very well said.
It just says cafe coffee cafe coffee cafe coffee cafe coffee...
But it has a good point.
That's what Korea is.
There are about 5 cafes in average every 10~20 steps you take.

(second floor basement)
This is another type of his art works.
It's hard to get right to the center of his point,
but I could tell he was trying to criticize some things about society
by showing some distaste in them...

(third floor basement)
This is his main floor,
but this place looks ever more casual.
It's probably because this is where he just doodled around for 3 months
while he was in Korea.

He also very well pointed out that
"there are so many stars, and so few ideas"
He may be pointing out the lack of creativity that Korea teaches its children in school.
When they grow up, this is what they're going to be like.
So many stars (graduated from good college, well-paid job, social respect)
but so few ideas (don't really know how to actually make a use out of the stars).
What's the use of all the good tools if you don't know how to use them?

I think if you make Korea in to a book,
it would look like this.
Culture will only get one page of the entire book.

Ever felt this way before?
I'm sure many have, not just Koreans... lol

Oh, it's so sad how true this is...
When you're young, you work for to get a house.
By the time you can afford it and have it,
you're 9,000 years old.

This picture could be taken literally, because yes, our big brother (government) has many eyeballs (hidden cameras). 
But in my point of view, as a person who's lived outside Korea for more than half
of my life, I think it shows how everyone is keeping their eyes on everyone else.
For example, when one person does something,
someone is sure to see it,
and the next day, everyone in Korea knows about it.
I mean... I feel being watched.

This could be interpreted in so many different ways, but I think the question
in the picture is a rhetorical question.
You know that GPS is supposed to lead to where you want to end up?
You probably also know that most GPS gives you the shortest way (time wise or distance wise) to your destination.
And if yours do, everyone else's GPS would give everyone the same exact route.
Everyone'll naturally follow that route, and think exactly the same way
as though they have a thinking GPS that leads them to take the same route.

"If you want to end up as a doctor, you must do this."
"If you want to be a singer, you must do that."
"If you want to be happy, you must attend at least Korea's top 3 colleges."
"If you want to be appreciated, you must be pretty."
"If you want to be strong, you need to be rich."

This is basically what's going on in minds of people who have the Thinking GPS.

This is what Friday night looks like in Korea.
It's so true. Friday night's probably the only time the workers get
some time off from work.
Maybe there's a deeper interpretation that I could not capture?
Please comment and enlighten my ignorant self? :3

This is where the guests can get a chance to doodle for themselves.
I saw some positive things,
but I saw more negative feelings and some bottled up anger 
expressed in the black board.

How Korea just stables a price tag on everyone and everything...

I think this may be about too much access to information like
news, political events, other people's lives through internet and social network.

The picture right below that says I "Phone" instead of "am"
depicts very very well Korea obsession with their phones.
If you go on a train, 90% of the people are staring into their phones
looking for... I don't know... maybe the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow?

The picture above on the right, I think, shows how strong the
lemming's dilemma is in Korea.... or at least how much people
copy the "best" to be the best.
If someone gets the name "best", no matter how ridiculous the things they do may be,
people copy thinking that that is THE way!
See how the "best" is on some weird position with it's ass pointing upwards?
Well, the person behind does it, too, wanting to be the best.

Korea has some awesome, D-E-L-icious food.
So people tend to over-eat and start working out like crazy, because the "thinking GPS" that I mentioned before says "fat=stupid, lazy, ugly, mean, etc". When you're fat, all these extra degrading tags come along for some reason...
So people eat like crazy,
but they also work out like crazy afterwards, concerned about their weights.

The picture above on the left shows how people are as grilled-hot up
in their attics as their Korean barbecue grill is. They're really fed up,
angry, tired, frustrated, and on and on.

Yeah, no, really.
All those demos.
When will they stop?
Too many fights within the country.
Don't they know they're fighting their own brothers and sisters?

 How couples are so obsessed with matching shirts, sweaters, and even iPods...
and thinking of buying a house just splits our skulls apart.
It really does. This Dan Perjovschi guy really knows what's going on in Korea.

People drowning in jobs,
people fighting (can't tell which one's the bad guy. Because neither side is!),
people becoming slaves of their work.

Hey, guys, don't get Korea wrong though.
It also has some wonderful sides that you have never experienced before.

Don't get ME wrong, either.
I love my home country, Korea,

... but as much as I do,
I am so embarrassed of some things about Korea.

Some are mentioned by this artist, but there are even more things that cannot
be put in pictures, even by such a creative artist.
Not just bad things, but also great things.

I really really hope some Koreans would see this and LEARN, not be UPSET
by the Dan Perjovschi's depiction of Korea.

Isn't the reason I still love Korea
the same reason you still love your family
no matter how messed up or annoying it may be?

So please don't criticize and judge yet, because this artist and our blog is yet to
show some of the wonderful things that Korea can offer...

I mean...
what would he draw when he visits other countries?

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