29 Sep 2017 Seoul Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism Starts Its Big Run of 66-Day Event
2017 Seoul Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism
Starts Its Big Run of 66-Day Event
‘One Step Closer to a Shared City’
The ‘Seoul Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism 2017’ event has begun its 66 day event. The event that started on the 2nd this month is the first biennale held in Seoul and the first global academic and exhibition festival in Korea based on the theme of city and architecture. The Seoul Biennale will be held in various places that show off Seoul’s history and industries, including the Donuimum Museum Village and Dongdaemun Design Plaza (DDP) for 2 months from its opening ceremony to November 5.
The opening ceremony was held at Dongdaemun Design Plaza (DDP) in Jung-gu, Seoul on the 2nd and there were various celebratory performances with the participation of more than 200 people including the Mayor of Seoul Park Won-Soon, actor Lee Jae-Hoon, artists participating in the biennale, and the general public.
Mayor Park Won-Soon, who attended the opening ceremony, said that during the past half-century, Seoul was a city that only looked forward but now it will transform into a city that focuses on its people. Moreover, Seoul Biennale director Bae Hyung-Min said he would like to deliver the prospects of a good future through architecture and design, art and exhibitions shown through this event.
The Seoul Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism will be held in Seoul for 2 months until November 5 in the midst of over 300 diverse programs. The programs will be free of charge excluding the main exhibition. Aside from the opening ceremony, there will be various on-going weekly events such as on-site talk shows, movie screenings, and public lectures for the next 4 days. The Donuimum Museum Village, the main site of the ‘themed exhibition’ which is the main exhibition, was unveiled on the 2nd together with the opening ceremony.
Specialized Tour for Seoul Biennale, ‘Seoul is heading towards the Right Direction’
Participants from around the world who have come for the Seoul Biennale have fallen in love with Seoul’s architecture that displays the past, as well as the present, as the future of Seoul. The Seoul Metropolitan Government and Seoul Tourism Organization carried out a special tour program for 16 foreign participants who came to the Seoul Biennale on the 3rd allowing them to explore the diverse architectural culture of Seoul. The participants visited Seoullo 7017, Sewoon Shopping Mall, and Bukchon Hanok Village which are some of the representing examples of Seoul’s successful urban regeneration projects. They showed a deep interest in the Korean architecture culture in Seoul and mentioned that the Seoul is heading towards the right direction by carrying out an urban regeneration project that focuses on the people.
‘Seoullo 7017’ – ‘Sewoon Plaza’-
The first place the participants visited was Seoullo 7017. The Seoul Metropolitan Government rebuilt the highway near Seoul Station into a pedestrian way instead of dismantling it when it deteriorated with age. This highway was initially built to solve the transportation problems that occurred during the great industrialization period in 1970. The next course was Sewoon Shopping Mall in Jongro, the most active city revitalization project in Seoul. The Seoul Metropolitan Government is currently restructuring the deteriorating electronics shopping mall through the ‘Re-Establishment Sewoon Project’ to transform the area into a fourth industrial technology-based strategic point and tourist attraction. Last but not least, the participants visited Bukchon Village, which lies between Gyeongbokgung Palace and the Changdeokgung Palace. Bukchon preserves many cultural assets, historical sites, and more than 900 traditional hanoks, vividly displaying the scenery of a 600-year-old city.
On this day, the participants said, “We felt that Seoul’s urban regeneration project is heading towards the right direction.” In addition, they added, “When we visited the reconstructed sites such as Seoullo 7017, Sewoon Shopping Mall, and Bukchon Hanok Village for ourselves we once again felt that it is important to build and design a city where people can live together and that can be preserved instead of being beneficial to mankind.”