korea

Lawrence Blackman Is An Animul

He's a man of few words, that is unless he's feeling super wordy.

Featured in our June 2014 issue, Lawrence Blackman sets himself apart as an artist who seldom re-draws and often keeps editing to a minimum. Whether it's a drawing of a single flower or something resembling a stream of consciousness journal entry, Blackman always tells the truth. And he makes it seem so easy.

Blackman has previously compiled two collections of his drawings with his books "The Most Beautiful Colour on Earth" and "Mountains of Light". Now he is introducing a third book of drawings, "Animul". As with his past work, he hopes to stir up questions about human interaction and our relationship with the world around us. 
 

What is interesting about Blackman's work is the range of emotions that it manages to stir with its simplistic drawings and straightforward statements. His work can seem cheery, innocent and hopeful while at the same time possessing a smart, dark humor. It can make you want to yell "Everything is meaningless!" with a huge smile on your face, lifting your hands towards the sky. Or, you could find yourself whimpering the exact same sentiment with your head in your hands. You can decide if the message is positive or nihilistic. Blackman wants to leave it up to you.

View more of Blackman's work on his website and stay up to date on his latest drawings, accomplishments and events on his facebook page.

- Lisa Highfill
 

Walk It Out, Snap Some Pics, Win Prizes

Today marks the one-month countdown to the 7th Annual Scott Kelby Worldwide Photo Walk. The walk is the largest of its kind with over 800 walks scheduled to take place in countries all over the world on Saturday, October 11th.

Five walks have been organized in Korea so far and photographers of all skills levels are invited to join the groups who will be trekking around Gwangju, Gyeongju, Daejon, and Seoul (which will host two walks). If you don't have a fancy camera and are only working with your iphone, don't worry. Join a walk anyway. This is a time for photographers to practice, learn, teach, get some fresh air, and generally nerd out over their love of taking pictures.

Each organizer has planned for their group to meet at a cafe or restaurant to relax and share their work after the walk.

Participants will also have to opportunity to submit their photos from the event and win prizes from this year's sponsors.

Click on the city names listed above to sign up for your walk. No photo walk organized for your city? Click here to start one! 

June Preview: You're A Winner!

Future [b]racket artist Todd Holoubek's collection Everybody Wins is one of my favorite types of art to experience in a gallery or museum. It's art that is supposed to be touched. Not only does Holoubek want you to make contact with his collection, he wants you to play. And the best thing about playing these games? You'll never lose.

Holoubek has crafted pieces that resemble the tile puzzles we played with as kids. If you weren't that one gifted kid in class who could solve the Rubik's cube in under 3 minutes, then you probably knew the frustration and defeat of not always being able to quickly solve these puzzle games.

The largest of Holoubek's pieces from Everybody Wins was recently exhibited in Seoul. Take a look at how each movement of a tile makes the player a winner.

Holoubek has an extensive and impressive body of work outside of his Everybody Wins collection. Of course, we weren't able to showcase all of it in the June issue, so be sure to take it all in on his website www.toddholoubek.com.

My personal favorite is entitled Hermetically Sealed.

Normal objects presented as icons always strike a chord with me. They serve as a reminder that all iconography is just a previously unremarkable object that is only special because we've decided to present it in a certain way. In reality, icons are not inherently special; we're the ones who have given them their power.

Jess Hinshaw writes more about Holoubek's work in the June issue of [b]racket, which will be available this weekend all over Daegu. Issues will be available in Seoul and Busan by next week. Click the Locations tab at the top of the page to see where you can get your hands on what is becoming Korea's favorite (and FREE) art magazine.

- Lisa Highfill

A Thank You And An Invite

Let's start this post off with a huge THANK YOU to everyone who came out to Big Day South last weekend. The turnout was huge, and I think everyone got the message that Ulsan, Busan and Daegu are three Korean cities that have a lot of art and music to share with the world. Check out some of our favorite #BIGDAYSOUTH photos from the festival.

by: Jess Hinshaw

by: Jess Hinshaw

Q: How jealous are you of Chris' custom Daegu hat?
A: Extremely

by instagram.com/safpics

by instagram.com/safpics

by instagram.com/safpics

by instagram.com/safpics

We have some great photographers in Daegu, don't we? Well, the Daegu Photography Club wants to help them get even better.

by: Jeff Freeman

by: Jeff Freeman

The photography club (headed by Jeff Freeman) is hosting a photography walk on May 10th and is inviting anyone and everyone who wants to improve their photo-snappin' skills to come along. They'll be trekking around Keimyung University's campus and the Ark (pictured above).

Don't own a fancy camera? Only working with a camera phone? Don't worry, you're still invited. The photo walk is first and foremost an opportunity to socialize and network with people who share the same interests. And they'd love to help you hone your skills if you'd like by offering advice and even giving some tips on how to use programs like Lightroom and Photoshop. 

The walk starts at 2PM at Gangchang station. Out-of-towners are encouraged to come along as well. Click the photo above for more info on the group's facebook page.

- Lisa Highfill

An Emotional King Sejong: One of 52 Moments

Moments Watches King SejongMatt Ferguson’s art caught our attention back in 2012; so much so that we decided to make it our cover art for the very first issue of [b]racket. Since then, Matt has moved from Korea, but his collaboration with Moment Watches suggests that his time in the ROK made a lasting impression. His unique and simplistic watch design depicts King Sejong, the beloved Korean historical figure responsible for the creation of Hangul, with a tear running down his face. Matt created this work to illustrate that while Korea’s hasty rise in industry and economic power have proven fruitful for the nation, it has come at a cost to the country’s traditional culture and values. He believes that King Sejong might be happy to see Korea as successful as it has become. However, he might also be saddened by what it took out of the Korean people and environment to get here. Matt's work is a reminder of the line that Korea walks between their love of tradition, and their drive to be a leader in the modern global economy.

While it might be a somewhat serious message, it’s a seriously awesome-looking watch. Click here to check out the timepiece that serves as Week 12 for Moment Watches’ “Year of 52 Moments” campaign.

Sidenote: If you were planning on coming to Gallery [t.] this Saturday, Aoife Casey's reception has been postponed until February 15th. So we'll see you all NEXT weekend!

- Lisa Highfill

Ever Wonder What [b]racket Sounds Like?

Seoul radio station TBS gave [b]racket some air time last week. Our multiple hat-wearing support team member Julian voiced the motivations, intentions and hopes for our magazine to the public. Take a listen to the radio spots below to hear the whole story of the origins of [b]racket, and why we treat treat the magazine as a “portable gallery” for all of our readers to enjoy.

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A Pleasant (And Crafty) Surprise On Bus Street

social market.jpg

As you might have picked up by now, us [b]racket folk love to promote artists living in Korea. We recently stumbled upon a store in downtown Daegu that is doing just that. Social Market opened its doors less than two months ago and is full of handmade crafts and unique pieces from artists throughout Korea. As I was browsing today I was kicking myself for not making it to this place before Christmas! I spotted loads of small pieces that would have made perfect gifts. The work for sale includes small art prints, handmade jewelry and bags, pottery, cards, and countless other handcrafted items. 

I recommend ordering a coffee at the counter and moseying upstairs to the loft to flip through their selection of art books and magazines. I picked up two small prints from artist Gwon Soojeong for (get ready for it) 3,000 won (WHAT?? I thought it was a mistake. It was not.) I had to stop myself from buying a SICK handmade bag because I have too many bags--but if we're being totally honest I'll go back and get it this weekend because can you really have too many awesome bags?

In addition to selling unique items Social Market is also holding crafting events throughout the month of January. Check out the schedule of classes and directions below.


Making A Grain Hand Warmer by Titisae Jan. 11th (Sat) @ 2PM 12,000won (including material fee)

Making A Dream Catcher by Yudali Jan. 18th (Sat) @ 6PM 30,000won (including material fee with free drinks)

Making 'Wish' Bracelets by Hohogangi Jan. 25th (Sat) @ 3PM 20,000won (including material fee for a pair of bracelets with free drinks)

How to get there: From Exit 3 of Jungangro Station on Line 1, go one block straight (on bus street) and you'll see Dong-a pharmacy (동아약국). Social Market is right next to the pharmacy.

- Lisa Highfill

Cartoonist Kevin Kilgore Lightens The Expat Mood

Kilgores' got love for the ajummas Do all expats in Korea eventually turn in to grumpy kimchi-hating perpetual eye-rollers? It can sometimes feel that way. [b]racket artist Kevin Kilgore (featured in the September issue) recently had something to say about the cure for his own bad attitude in the Korea Herald this week.

“It’s so easy to start complaining about life in Korea, especially when you’ve been here for a while,” he told the Herald. “So, I figured I’m here for a reason, and I must like it here, so why not draw about that?”

And so he did. Things I Love About Korea is one of Kilgore's ongoing projects. The name says it all; he is compiling a  list of things he loves about living in the ROK and draws comics to illustrate his points. I found myself agreeing with a lot of "loves" on his list, such as Korea's delicious and inexpensive food or all the "freebies" that come heavily taped to products you buy at the grocery store. While scrolling though some of Kilgore's comics I even began to feel a bit sappy and sentimental about those interactions and occurrences that we can only experience here in Korea. Then I remembered how much people spit in the street and got a hold of myself.

But remember to focus on the positives, folks, and keep up with all the Korean things Kevin loves (you probably love 'em too) at his blog.

Check out the article at the Korea Herald which features Kilgore and a number of other artists who have experienced and create comics based on expat life in the country we love, and admittedly, sometimes love to hate.

- Lisa Highfill