Sunday, 30 August 2009

‘A Scoop of Korea’: Bringing Korea to the Heart of London

‘A Scoop of Korea’ is being held as a part of The Mayor’s Thames Festival, a spectacular, free celebration of London and its river, taking place on 12th and 13th September 2009. It is presented by the Korean Cultural Centre (Director: Kyu Hak Choi) and sponsored by the Korea Tourism Organisation. ‘A Scoop of Korea’ will take place at The Scoop at More London; it will feature over 60 artists and performers direct from Korea to showcase the best of traditional and contemporary Korean culture.

This is the third year that the Korean Cultural Centre (KCC) has brought Korean performances to the Mayor’s Thames Festival and it has helped to build lasting relations between the Thames Festival Trust and the Hi Seoul Festival held in Korea. The 2009 programme is the most ambitious yet in terms of the diversity of the acts that will be shown. Performances will include traditional Korean dance, and a demonstration of Korea’s national sport – Taekwondo. There will also be a master class in Korean Cooking by the Institute of Traditional Korean Food and a screening of a Korean film. The highlight of the weekend will be the performance of Monsters’ Theatre from SOREA – a fusion of contemporary music played on traditional Korean instruments with hip hop beats and break dancing.

Traditional Korean dance has its roots in shamanistic rituals of 3,000 years ago, and has since developed a wide range of folk and modern dances. Performers from the Korean Traditional Music Association will perform a total of nine dances and audiences will be able to enjoy the internationally acclaimed Fan Dance which uses fans decorated with pink peony blossoms.

In contrast to this, Monsters’ Theatre from SOREA will showcase a performance that pioneers the new age of Korean music and performing arts. SOREA was recognised as the leading creative music group of Korea when it was awarded the Gold Award at the Creative Korean Classical Music Competition in 2005. In 2006, it was selected by the Korea Creative Content Agency to perform at the International Music Exhibition MIDEM in France. During the 2006 World Cup in Germany, the group was invited by the organisers of FIFA Fan Fest to perform throughout Germany. At ‘A Scoop of Korea’, SOREA will give a performance of its latest project. Monsters’ Theatre is a new performance developed by SOREA, and the performers – known as ‘Jammers’ – present a fresh take on Korean performing arts by combining taekwondo, break dancing, percussion and comedy.

In recent years there has been growing interest in Korean cuisine and the health benefits of following a Korean diet. The Institute of Traditional Korean Food will introduce a definitive collection of Korean dishes to the audience and demonstrate how to make them. There will also be a mock Procession of the Emperor of Korea to demonstrate traditional dining etiquettes.

Taekwondo is a Korean martial art that can trace its roots to 50 B.C., and it is the world’s most popular martial art with an estimated 50 million practitioners worldwide. At ‘A Scoop of Korea’ over 20 members from the Korea National Sport University Taekwondo team will perform high-flying kicks, acrobatic flips and board-breaking. The team will also demonstrate some practical self defense techniques.

In the evening there will be an open air screening of ‘The Good, The Bad, The Weird’ (Director: Kim Ji-woon). The film was inspired by Sergio Leone's ‘The Good, the Bad and the Ugly’ and contains exciting action scenes based in the wilderness of Manchuria.

‘A Scoop of Korea’ is a celebration of Korea’s cultural diversity, and it will provide a supreme opportunity to Londoners and international visitors at the Mayor’s Thames Festival to immerse themselves in Korean culture.

Restaurant Tour #9: POCHANGMACHA

On most streets in South Korea you’ll find roadside eateries with plastic roll-down walls affording protection from the elements. They are basically used by people who want an inexpensive meal and a drink of Soju (an alcoholic drink). This type of eating place is called a "POCHANGMACHA" - meaning a “Covered Cart” which can be pulled or pushed by hand. It is quite apt because they are able to change locations easily.

My meal this month was at a restaurant with the same name. This venue has been open for six years.

56 St Giles High Street

Telephone No: 020 7379 7381

Opening Times: Monday to Saturday 1200 hours to 1500 hours
1800 hours to 0100 hours
Sunday 1800 hours to 2400 hours

A limited selection of alcoholic beverages is available
Tottenham Court Road tube station ( Northern and Central lines) is literally a minute’s walk away. Numerous bus routes offer easy access.

The owner is Ms Cheong Shin Briggs
The chef is Kyeon Chon Pyo
There are a five staff working in the kitchen and serving customers.
Good English is spoken by the owner, chef and staff.

This restaurant has the capacity to seat twenty eight patrons in the main ground floor dining area. The kitchen is also on this level enabling the meals to be seen whilst being prepared.
The lower dining area can seat twenty further patrons and is currently being redecorated to become a Japanese Sushi restaurant with a different name.

The décor is simple with dark painted walls, complimentary lighting, wooden tables and wooden chairs with padded seats.
The menu describes the dishes in Korean and in English. Set lunch menus are also available. Portable barbeques are provided when necessary.

POCHANGMACHA has a certain ambience echoing similar restaurants in South Korea with Korean food being served at competitive prices for the area.

Approximately half the clientele are Korean (students for the most part) and other nationalities make up the remainder including office workers and tourists. The busiest times are from Thursday evenings to Sunday nights.

Three main dishes were served.

Ham and Noodle Big Pot Stew
Ham, Kimchi, vegetables, Korean noodles and Tofu with spicy sauce- a favourite with diners

Stone Bibimbab
Rice topped with vegetables and a fried egg in a stone bowl-a dish I enjoy

Steamed spicy Cod
Steamed Cod and vegetables with a spicy sauce-compliments the Bibimbab

Side dishes
Namul------thin strips of marinated white radish (Mooli)
Kimchi-----Pickled Chinese Leaf Lettuce-an agreeable taste

Boiled rice
I didn’t know what to expect upon entering POCHANGMACHA albeit there were diners were of different nationalities present. Our meal only consisted of three main dishes but was quite sufficient for the two of us. I was pleasantly surprised by the quality and taste. A return visit in the future cannot be ruled out.

Friday, 28 August 2009

Crossfields Events

How to Thrive as an Artist? (Panel Discussion)
Tuesday 8 September, 2009, 6- 7.30pm – free (Korean Cultural Centre UK)

In order to bring a wider perspective, the Korean Cultural Centre UK has invited experts from the art world to discuss the participating artists’ works and the contemporary art scene in the Europe in general. Through this open discussion with the audience and the artists we very much hope that you will also develop your own understanding of the philosophy behind the works.

The exhibition curator Seungmin Kim will lead the forum of panellists which includes the Director of Birmingham’s Ikon Gallery Jonathan Watkins. He was curator of the Chisenhale Gallery in London during which period this relatively small local gallery became an internationally known centre of excellence - many of the Artists shown at that time have since gone on to major acclaim including a number of Turner Prize winners. Watkins later moved to the Serpentine Gallery (1995–1997) and worked in a freelance capacity as curator of the Biennale of Sydney in 1998. Watkins now lives in Birmingham, England. He currently directs the Ikon Gallery, and recently unveiled plans for a new museum of modern art in Birmingham.

The other panelist is Professor Mark Nash. Professor Nash is the Head of Department of the Curating Contemporary Art department, Mark Nash is a well-known specialist in contemporary fine art moving image practices, avant-garde and world cinema. He was co-curator of Documenta 11, (2002) and film curator of the Berlin Biennial, (2004). He has most recently curated Experiments With Truth, Fabric Workshop and Museum, Philadelphia, (2004-5) and a conference on Film and Ecology for the Royal Society of Arts. Prior to joining the Royal College of Art, Mark was Director of Fine Art Research at Central St Martins, He has also been a Senior Lecturer in Film History and Theory at the University of East London, and visiting lecturer on the Whitney Museum Independent Study Programme.

Participating Artists: SHIN Gunwoo, SHIN Kiwoon, KIM Gemini, HUR Shan, BAAK Je, KWON Soon-Hak

Fashion Workshop
Thursday 3 September, 2009, 2 - 4pm – free (Korean Cultural Centre UK)

The fashion workshop is aimed at children aged 5 to 10 accompanied by parents or guardians.The workshop will feature the process of designing and patterning clothes. Please fill the participating slip to complete registration.
Please download the application form from the

Gallery Tour “Talk and Walk at Crossfields”
Tuesday 3 September, 2009, 4-5pm – free

The Gallery Tour is open to all and is an opportunity to meet the artists and the exhibition curator and to discuss the works on display.

For more information please contact:
Stephanie Seungmin Kim
Exhibition Manager
Korean Cultural Centre UKGround Floor, Grand Buildings1-3 Strand, London WC2N 5BW
T: +44(0) 207 004 2600(2608)
M: +44 (0) 78 555 20660

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Wednesday, 26 August 2009

Taiko Dojo Drumfest

Date: 24, 25, 26, 28 & 29 August 2009
Venue: St. John’s Church, Festival of Spirituality & Peace, Princes Street, Edinburgh, EH2 4BJ
Tel: 01357 522 008
Fax:01357 522 008
Organiser: Mugen Taiko Dojo
Fee: £12/£10 (concession)

The Mugen Taiko Dojo present a taiko drumfest at the Edinburgh Fringe as part of the Festival of Spirituality and Peace.
A mesmerising display of exhilarating rhythms, martial choreography & high energy from the rising stars of taiko, trained at the Mugen Taiko Dojo, the UK’s premier training centre for this thrilling artform, which has made its home here in central Scotland.
For more information on all the performances, activities & groups based at the Dojo, go to:

Discover Japan #8: Nara Prefecture (THE EAST Campaign in Association with Japan National Tourist Organization London Office)

Nara Prefecture is a prefecture in the Kinki region on Honshū Island, Japan. The capital is the city of Nara.
The present-day Nara Prefecture was created in 1887, making it independent of Osaka Prefecture.
Historically, Nara Prefecture was also known as Yamato-no-kuni or Yamato Province.
It is certain that a political force established at the foot of Mount Miwa in the east of Nara Basin, seeking unification of most parts in Japan from the third century until the fourth century, though the process was not well documented.
At the dawn of history, Yamato was clearly the political centre of Japan.
Ancient capitals of Japan were built on the land of Nara, namely Asuka-kyō, Fujiwara-kyō (694–710) and Heijō-kyō (most of 710–784).
The capital cities of Fujiwara and Heijō are believed to have been modeled after Chinese capitals at the time, incorporating grid layout patterns.
The royal court also established relations with Sui and then Tang Dynasty China and sent students to the Middle Kingdom to learn high civilization.
By 7th century, Nara accepted the many immigrants including refugees of Baekje who had escaped from war disturbances of the southern part of the Korean peninsula. The first high civilization with royal patronage of Buddhism flourished in today’s Nara city (710–784 AD).
Kōfuku-jiIn 784, Emperor Kammu decided to relocate the capital to Nagaoka-kyō in Yamashiro Province, followed by another move in 794 to Heian-kyō, marking the start of the Heian period.
The temples in Nara remained powerful beyond the move of political capital, thus giving Nara a synonym of Nanto as opposed to Heian-kyō, situated in the north.

Close at the end of Heian period, Taira no Shigehira, a son of Taira no Kiyomori, was ordered by his father to depress the power of mainly Kōfuku-ji and Tōdai-ji, who were backing up an opposition group headed by Prince Mochihito.
The movement has led into a collision between the Taira and the Nara temples in 1180, when eventually Kōfuku-ji and Tōdai-ji were set on fire, resulting in the vast loss of its architectures.
At the rise of the Minamoto to its ruling seat and the opening of Kamakura Shogunate, Nara enjoyed the support of Minamoto no Yoritomo toward restoration.
Kōfuku-ji, being the “home temple” to the Fujiwara since its foundation, not only regained the power it had before but became a de facto regional chief of Yamato Province.
With the recovery of Kōfuku-ji and Tōdai-ji, there was a town growing near the two temples.
The Nanboku-chō period, starting in 1336, brought more instability to Nara. As Emperor Go-Daigo chose Yoshino as his base, a power struggle arose in Kōfuku-ji with a group supporting the South and another siding the North court.
Kōfuku-ji recovers its control over the province for a short time at the surrender of the South Court in 1392, while the internal power game of the temple itself opened a way for the local samurai clans to spring up and fight with each other, gradually acquire their own territories, thus diminishing the influence of Kōfuku-ji overall.
The restored turret of Kōriyama CastleLater the whole province of Yamato got drawn into the confusion of the Sengoku period.
Tōdai-ji was once again set on fire in 1567, when Matsunaga Hisahide, who was later appointed by Oda Nobunaga to the lord of Yamato Province, fought for supremacy against his former master Miyoshi family.
Followed by short appointments of Tsutsui Junkei and Toyotomi Hidenaga by Toyotomi Hideyoshi to the lord, the Tokugawa Shogunate ultimately ruled the city of Nara directly, and most parts of Yamato province with a few feudal lords allocated at Kōriyama, Takatori and other places.
With industry and commerce developing in the 18th century, the economy of the province was incorporated into prosperous Osaka, the commercial capital of Japan at the time.
The economic dependency to Osaka characterizes even today’s Nara Prefecture, for many inhabitants commute to Osaka to work or study there.

Monday, 24 August 2009

Photo exhibition "In the Footsteps of Isabella Bird: Adventures in Twin Time Travel"

Date: 10 September - 31 October 2009
Venue: AN TOBAR, Argyll Terrace, Tobermory, Isle of Mull, PA75 6PB
Tel: 01688302211
Organiser: AN TOBAR, The Tobermory Arts Centre

Isabella Bird was one of the most important, intrepid and adventurous travellers of the Victorian era. Between 1854 and 1900, she travelled the globe, including spending several years in Japan. Over a twenty-year period, Kiyonori Kanasaka followed in her footsteps, capturing images of places she visited. The resulting exhibition consists of 100 photographs displayed according to the stages of Isabella Bird’s travel history. It also includes approximately 25 photographs taken by Isabella Bird herself and 8 of her illustrations. Kiyonori Kanasaka quotes essential sentences from descriptions found in Isabella Bird’s books and papers to allow the viewer to compare each photograph with her thoughts and opinions. This highlights the change and sustainability of landscape, as well as encouraging the viewer to consider Kanasaka’s notion of “twin time travel” as a new style of travel.
Kiyonori Kanasaka will also give a talk on the 10th September at 8pm entitled “The Study of Isabella Bird and Twin Time Travel”.

New 2010 Acura ZDX Four-Door Sports Coupe Delivers Style, Performance, Luxury and Refinement

The all-new 2010 Acura ZDX four-door sports coupe will arrive this winter at Acura dealerships with dramatic styling, outstanding performance and the latest in advanced technology. The segment bending ZDX features stunning coupe-like styling with the added benefit of a commanding presence and flexible utility. Staying true to the prototype model that debuted at the 2009 New York International Auto Show in April, the production ZDX will feature the key design highlights of a panoramic glass roof, hidden rear door handles and bold fender flares.

"The ZDX is like nothing you have ever seen before from Acura," said Jeff Conrad, Vice President of Acura sales. "It combines the best attributes of a coupe, a sedan and a sport utility – all wrapped in a beautifully sculpted package – that will attract an entirely new luxury customer to the Acura brand." Designed, developed and manufactured entirely in North America, the ZDX breaks new ground for Acura in many ways. The ZDX is the first vehicle to be styled from start to finish in the new, dedicated Acura Design Studio in Torrance, CA, allowing exterior and interior designers to work closely together throughout the entire design process. Staying true to the original sketch from Acura's first female designer, Michelle Christensen, the ZDX features sensuous curves, deeply sculpted shoulders and strong character lines.

Inside, the ZDX exhibits the highest levels of refinement and sophistication ever offered from Acura. Every ZDX interior will feature Acura's first hand-stitched leather dashboard, door panels and sculpted center console. The rich leather appointments give the ZDX a warm and inviting feeling while creating an intimate cockpit for the driver and front passenger. The cabin is well lit thanks to extensive use of LED lighting along with the light from the unique moonroof that is an integral design aspect of the longest glass roof in the industry. The panoramic glass roof has dual automatic sunshades that open and closes at the touch of a button.

Saturday, 22 August 2009

Completion Ceremony of the Japan-British Exhibition Japanese Garden Project

Date: September 2009
Venue: The Japanese Garden in Hammersmith Park, South Africa Road, White City, London, W12 7PA
Tel: 020 8800 7101
Organiser: Japan-British Exhibition 100 Japanese Garden Restoration Committee

A restoration of the authentic Japanese garden built for the Japan-British Exhibition held between May and October 1910 at White City in Shepherds Bush to celebrate the Anglo-Japanese Alliance. A Japanese garden designer, Izawa Hannosuke and Japanese and British workemn worked together to create the garden through the cold winter of 1908/09 to be ready for the exhibition.

The current Japanese garden is nearly two-thirds of the original size and is now part of Hammersmith Park. Although some restoration was done as part of the 2001 Japan Festival, it is still need of much work. From April-September 2009 staff from Hammersmith Council and Japanese and British volunteers will work under the supervision of a Japanese garden expert. The completion ceremony will be a chance to celebrate the restoration of the garden to its former glory.

Asiana to provide free airline tickets to golfer Yang, Yong Eun

Asiana Airlines (CEO: Young-Doo Yoon) will be sponsoring airline tickets on all of Asiana’s international routes to Yang, Yong Eun, the first Asian male golfer to win the PGA Championship in the United States, for the next three years. The ‘PGA Championship’ is considered one of the four major PGA events and the last one to be held this year. Yang upset number 1 ranking Tiger Woods by three shots in the final rounds to win the PGA Championship.

Yang and his wife will receive first class tickets, while their three children will receive business class seats to all destinations operated by Asiana.
Asiana and Yang share a special bond which is family. Yang, Yong Eun is the fourth of eight siblings and his younger sister Yang, Jin-Hyun (28 Assistant Manger at Jeju Airport Service Office) has been in the Asiana family for 7 years. Yang, Jin-Hyun commented, “I think my brother’s love and passion for sports starting from a young age and active personality gave him the strength to win such an enormous event.”
Asiana provides air tickets free of charge for a number of Korean athletes including golfer Choi, Kyung-Joo and Park, Ji-Sung of Manchester United in Britain’s Premier Soccer League.
In addition, the golf ball that Yang used during the final rounds of the ‘PGA Championship’ that led to his championship win was the Taylor Made TP Red. The core of the golf ball which is made out of synthetic rubber (Neodymium-butadiene rubber: NDBR) was produced and supplied by Kumho Petrochemical. This synthetic rubber material gives the golf ball more elasticity, less wear, and is excellent in exothermic reaction. The golf ball is well known for its elasticity, and provides more spin.

Thursday, 20 August 2009

The 2009 Japan Matsuri is coming to London!

Date: SATURDAY 19th September 2009 Open to the public from 10.00- 20.00
Spitalfields Traders Market
Nearest Tube: Liverpool Street, Aldgate, Aldgate East

Join us in celebration of Japan and its rich culture, arts & crafts as we welcome the Autumn season at one of London’s most vibrant markets! Situated in the heart of the city, Spitalfields Traders Market offers a unique spot for East to meet West.

Whether you are a londoner, missing home or have a bit of curiosity, this will be a fantastic opportunity for you to experience some of the most exciting entertainment in London, delight in exquisite Wa-shoku (Japanese cuisine) and get involved in as many interactive events as you can think of throughout the day.
Matsuri in Japan are a celebration of a local community; they involve local organisations, groups of friends and families. Even the major festivals, which attract visitors from all over Japan and the world, have their roots in community.
Japan Matsuri at Spitalfields is no different. 150 years since the start of formal diplomatic relations with Japan, London now has a Japanese community of over 60,000 people. This is their opportunity to celebrate with their friends of any nationality and with their families.
Bringing together music, dance, food, theatre, games and family activities, we look forward to welcoming you to Japan Matsuri in Spitalfields.
There is something for everyone: whether you have lived in Japan and feel nostalgic for the sights and smells of matsuri; are a Japanese student, office worker or artist keen to get together with friends; or are simply curious about Japan and what it looks like in London.

Discover Japanese Food #6: Atsuko's "Kinoko okowa" (THE EAST Campaign in Association with Atsuko’s Kitchen)

Okowa, means a type of rice dish made with mochigome, or sweet rice. It has an extra sticky texture, much more than normal rice. It is also used for making mochi (rice cake). You can use only mochigome for this recipe but I suggest using half mochigome, and mix with half normal Japanese rice. This will give a milder texture than using the 100% mochigome.
Also it is a great idea to add mochigome to other types of rice to make a rich texture.

There are many types of okowa in Japan such as red beans (sekihan) and chestnut okowa, mountain vegetables (sansai) okowa, but you can also make okowa with a variety of ingredients.
You can cook mochigome using the same method as normal rice, either with a rice cooker or heavy sauce pan.

This recipe is a seasonal okowa with a variety of wild mushrooms and gingko nuts:

* Ingredients: Serves 4
150 ml Japanese rice
150 ml Mochigome (sweet rice)
1 cup Variety of mushroom
5 cm Renkon (lotus root)
8 Ginnan (gingko nuts)

* Seasonings:
1½ tbsp Mirin
1½ tbsp Shoyu (dark soy sauce)
⅓ tsp Salt
1 tbsp Sesame oil
For garnishing:
A litle of Aonori

* Preparation:
1. Combine the Japanese rice and mochigome rice, and wash in a strainer under running water.
2. Leave to drain for 30 mins, until the rice separates again.
3. Meanwhile trim the mushroom then tear into pieces.
4. Cut the renkon into small pieces.

* Method:
1. Add the rice, mushroom, renkon, ginnan, sake, salt, shoyu, sesame oil, and 300ml of water in a pan, mix well.
2. Bring it to the boil with high heat.
3. As soon as it starts boiling, reduce to a very low heat and simmer for 11 mins.
4. Remove from the heat and leave it for 10 mins to calm down.
5. Mix gently from bottom to top.
* It is good for making rice balls, as mochigome is really sticky.
6. When you serve it, sprinkle a little aonori on top of the rice.

Tuesday, 18 August 2009

Engineering Scotland and Japan : Past, Present and Future

Date: Thursday 3rd September 2009, 6pm.
Venue: The Royal Society of Edinburgh, 22-26 George Street, Edinburgh, EH2 2PQ
Tel: 0131 240 5000
Fax: 0131 240 5024
Organiser: The Royal Society of Edinburgh

Scottish and Japanese representatives from academia and industry will present on the engineering links between the two countries, past, present and future. The event will be chaired by Professor Tariq Durrani, RSE Vice President and Professor of Signal Image Processing, University of Strathclyde.The lecture will be followed by a drinks reception at which Scottish-based students will present posters on their experience of visiting and studying in Japan.

Korean Air Donates Mega-sized Collage Artwork to Russia’s State Hermitage Museum

Korean Air today announced that it has donated a mega-sized collage work created by a group of college students in South Korea to commemorate the airline’s sponsorship of the recently unveiled Korean multimedia guide service at Russia’s State Hermitage Museum.

The 15.6m x 9.6m mega-sized collage features the exterior of the museum as well as a number of world renowned artworks such as “Woman Holding a Fruit” by Paul Gauguin. It was created through hard work by 67 South Korean students from Dankuk University for 10 days and nights starting on June 4. A total of 3240 magazines have been utilized for the collage. The UCC (User Created Contents) video that captured the process of collage creation has become an online sensation marking over 1.2 million hits by Korean online users, and over 2,250 international hits on the Korean Air YouTube channel:

Korean Air and the State Hermitage Museum hosted a ceremony at 12:30 pm (local time), Wednesday, August 12, at the Art Restoration and Storage Center of the State Hermitage Museum to celebrate the airline’s donation of the collage. Mr. Sung Moo Kim, General Manager of Korean Air’s airport service office in St. Petersburg, Dr. Mikhail Piotrovsky, Director of the State Hermitage Museum, Dr. Vladimir Matveev, Deputy Director for Exhibitions and Development of the State Hermitage Museum and 10 students of Dankuk University who participated in the collage creation attended the ceremony.

This donation started at the suggestion of Korean Air in line with its sponsorship of the Korean multimedia guide service launched in June and the State Hermitage Museum has gladly accepted it. The collage artwork is being exhibited at the museum for all visitors to appreciate.

“It is our pleasure to receive the remarkable mega-sized collage that made such a big hit in Korea. We sincerely appreciate Korean Air and the Korean college students for their enormous efforts to showcase the State Hermitage Museum through the collage,” said Dr. Mikhail Piotrovsky, Director of the State Hermitage Museum.

In order to express gratitude for the hard work done by the college students, Korean Air has provided 10 selected students and their professor with return tickets between Incheon and St. Petersburg as well as the chance to tour the State Hermitage Museum and historic sights in St. Petersburg. In addition, Kal Tour, a subsidiary tour agency of Korean Air, has supported the group’s accommodation expenses.

The group of students toured the State Hermitage Museum by experiencing the Korean language multimedia guide service and appreciated world renowned art pieces in greater depth with the lively explanations in the Korean language.

Gyu-Ho Lee, a representative of the student group who attended the donation ceremony, said, “I feel honored to see the collage which we worked on for ten nights and days to be exhibited at the world renowned State Hermitage Museum today. We hope that our efforts will enhance the level of cultural exchange between Korea and Russia.”

As a leading global carrier, Korean Air has made continuous efforts to spread Korean cultures around the world. Korean Air officially launched the new Korean multimedia guide service at the State Hermitage Museum in June and signed a MOU (Memorandum of Understanding) for further sponsorship over a five year period to produce the museum’s promotional materials, such as visitor guide maps and exhibition posters. The airline has also been sponsoring the Korean multimedia guide service of the Louvre Museum in Paris since February 2008.

Korean Air will expand its partnership with the world’s prestigious museums and develop various activities to contribute to global cultural understanding.

Sunday, 16 August 2009

A call for justice for Tibetans and Dhondup Wangchen was made in the heart of London

On Tuesday 11 August, Tibet supporter, Mark, flew the Tibet flag and highlighted Dhondup Wangchen's case during his one hour on the Fourth Plinth in Trafalgar Square.

Mark Cordell travelled down from Saltburn in the north of England to take up his place on the Fourth Plinth as part of sculptor Anthony Gormley’s living monument “One and Other”. For 24 hours a day throughout 100 days, 2,400 people from all over the UK will occupy the Fourth Plinth and make it their own for one hour. This innovative artistic experiment has been running since 6 July, coincidentally the Dalai Lama’s birthday.

Mark was the first “Plinther” to represent Tibet. When he contacted Tibet Society he said “it seems pretty scary to be on the plinth alone, but I want to do something for Tibet”. He was very disturbed by the plight of film maker, Dondup Wangchen, so decided to speak out about Dhondup’s forthcoming trial and Tibetans’ right to justice through internationally recognised standards and rule of law.

Under its policy of engagement with China, the British government works with the Chinese government to help establish internationally recognised due legal processes and rule of law in China. However, whilst engagement and working to improve conditions within China in key areas, such as rule of law, is well intentioned, questions must be raised about the effectiveness of such programmes. The British government must ensure the Chinese government does not simply use these initiatives as window dressing, but shows real commitment to implementing the basic rights of defendants to have fair and open trials and access to independent legal advice and representation.

As an insight into what little regard the Chinese government appears to hold these programmes, the licences to practice law of six well-known human rights lawyers have recently been revoked. At least 14 more are at risk of suffering the same fate as they are await the results of the annual assessment of their licences.

The Chinese authorities are also cracking down on organisations that voice any form of criticism or initiate debate on current issues. In early July the Open Constitution Initiative (OCI), a Chinese non-governmental organisation, published a report examining the unrest that took place in Tibet in March 2008. In its conclusions, the OCI had questioned the efficacy of the Chinese government’s policies in the region. Shortly after publication, its offices were raided by the authorities and all its computers were confiscated, effectively shutting down its operations.

Written by
Tibet Society

Sony set to take Design in Europe to the Next Level

Marking the beginning of a new era in Sony Design, Sony announced the appointment of Takuya ‘Tak’ Kawagoi as the new director of Sony Design Centre Europe (DCE). Taking up the position from the Sony Creative Centre in Tokyo, Tak brings a wealth of design expertise to DCE where he will take the reins and undertake a pivotal role in directing the hotbed of young and highly creative talent in the DCE team and infuse his vision for a new approach to Sony Design in Europe.

An instrumental figure in Sony Design since joining in 1991, Tak’s design excellence is displayed by the global adoption of his iconic Sony Ericsson logo. He will continue to impart his design prowess through leading DCE, based in London, into a new stage of Sony’s design story, working on exciting projects that will take Sony Design in Europe to the next level.

Speaking of his new position, Tak commented, “It is an honour to lead the European Design Centre into what is set to be a new era for Sony Design. We have a rich design heritage at Sony including strong branding and product designs. At DCE we will strive to build on this heritage and deliver strong and creative results for our customers to enjoy the beauty of both our technology and our aesthetic design.”

Friday, 14 August 2009

The Henry Dyer Collection: Dai Nippon Exhibition

Date: 22 August - 10 October 2009
Venue: Mackintosh Gallery, The Glasgow School of Art, 167 Renfrew Street, Glasgow G3 6RQ
Tel: 0141 353 4538/4471
Organiser: The Glasgow School of Art, Mackintosh Gallery

'Dai Nippon' brings together woodblock prints from the Henry Dyer Collection. Previously undisplayed, this is a rare opportunity to view this outstanding collection of work from Eizan, Kuniyoshi, Kunisada, Sadahide, Kunichika and Hiroshige. The exhibition focuses upon the kabuki related material in the collection and explores theatrical traditions of Japan. Henry Dyer's enthusiasm for acquiring Ukiyo-e documents the cultural reciprocity in the Japan and the West at the close of the 19th Century.

Dyer was the first Briton to be decorated by the Japanese Government. Having resided in Japan from 1873-1882, he was awarded the Order of the Rising Sun, third class, upon his departure.

Discover Korean Food #12: Dr. Sook-Ja Yoon's "Mul-naengmyeon" (THE EAST Campaign in Association with The Institute of Traditional Korean Food)

Mul-naengmyeon is a dish of buckwheat noodles in chilled broth that is garnished with radish Kimchi, pickled cucumber, Korean pear and slices of pressed beef. Originally it was had thin ice over it and was served in the winter, but nowadays people enjoy this dish all year round.

* 400 g buckwheat noodles (dried), 3 kg (15 cups) water
* 300 g beef (brisket·shank), 1.6 ㎏ (8 cups) water,
fragrant seasoning : 20 g green onion, 20 g garlic
* seasoning sauce : 9 g (½ tbsp) clear soy sauce, 24 g (2 tbsp) sugar, 45 g (3 tbsp) vinegar, 24 g (2 tbsp) salt, 5.4 g (½ tbsp) fermented mustard
* 50 g cucumber, 2 g (½ tsp) salt, 15 g (1 tbsp) water
* 170 g radish, 4 g (1 tsp) salt, 12 g (1 tbsp) sugar, 15 g (1 tbsp) vinegar
* 2.2 g (1 tsp) fine ground red pepper
* 100 g (1/5 ea) pear, 100 g (½ cup) water, 4 g (1 tsp) sugar
* 120 g (2 ea) egg, 1 kg water, 4 g (1 tsp) salt
* 10 g (1 tbsp) pine nuts, 0.5 g shred red pepper

1. Clean blood of beef with cotton cloths. Wash the fragrant seasoning cleanly.
2. Put the beef and water in the pot, heat it up for 10 min. on high heat. When it boils, lower the heat to medium, simmer for 1 hour, add green onion and garlic, simmer for another 30 min. (1 kg).
3. Take the beef (300 g) out from the broth, slice it into 4 cm-wide, 2 cm-long and 0.2 cm-thick. After the broth cooled down, skim fats, season with seasoning sauce.
4. Wash the cucumber and halve lengthwise, slice at intervals of 0.2 cm-thick diagonally, soak it in salt water for 20 min, then wipe water with cotton cloths (43 g).
5. Shred the radish into 5 cm-long, 2 cm-wide and 0.2 cm-thick, marinate with salt, sugar, vinegar and fine ground red pepper for 20 min. (100 g). Peel the pear, cut it into half-moon shape, dip in sugar water (70 g).
6. Remove tops of the pine nuts, wipe the nuts with dry cotton cloths. Cut the shred red pepper into 2~3 cm of length.

* Recipe
1. Put the eggs, water and salt in the pot, heat it up for 5 min. on high heat. When it boils, lower the heat to medium, boil for another12min. Take out the eggs, put in cold water, then peel eggshell, cut them into two pieces.
2. Pour water in the pot, heat it up for 12 min. on high heat. When it boils, add noodles, boil for 2 min. Take the noodles out from the pot, wash in cold water by rubbing, make coils with noodles and drain water on a strainer (830 g).
3. Place the noodles in a bowl, garnish with beef, cucumber, radish, egg, pear, pine nuts and shred red pepper, then pour the cold broth.

* Cold radish pickled Kimchi juice in the beef broth, or only Kimchi juice may be another choice for the broth.
* In summer season, young summer radish Kimchi may be a tasteful broth.
* More fermented mustard and/or more vinegar in the dish is an option.

Wednesday, 12 August 2009

Dartington Japan Week

Date: 22-29 August 2009
Venue: The Great Hall, Dartington Hall, Totnes, Devon TQ9 6DE
Tel: 01803 847080
Fax: 01803 847087
Organiser: Dartington International Summer School

Every year, Dartington International Summer School runs the Bogan House Concert Series at Bogan House, High Street, Totnes. These lunch-time events are held over three thursdays during the duration of Summer School.
Part of a week of events at Dartington International Summer School, renowned composer Somei Satoh will lead a week of workshops, lectures and performances, alongside the Okeanos ensemble's residency. There will also be two performances of Puccini's Madame Butterfly.

12 Dadungyi Family Experience Flight Attendant Class

Asiana Airlines (CEO: Young-Doo Yoon) invited families that have over 3 children (Dadungyi Family) to the headquarters of Asiana Airlines located in Gangseo-Gu, Osae-Dong, Seoul Korea on the 10th of August (Mon). These families composed of 63 people, experienced a one day flight attendant experience class

This event was held to set an example and show how critical the low birth rate problems are currently affecting our society today. The “Dadungyi” families were invited to the headquarters of Asiana Airlines, where they experienced cabin magic shows, emergency evacuation, and cabin services. The family members experienced a variety of programs where the purpose of the event was to feel the warmth of family hood and make special memories.

Especially during this event, the most recently aired nation wide television show”The 12th child is born” Mr. Sang Don, Nam’s family along with “the 7 brothers and sisters of Shinwol-Dong,” Ms. Yun-Jung, Kim’s family, attended the event. The children of (Dadungyi) families, enjoyed today’s event and spent some meaningful time together.

Bora, Nam (20 year old sophomore student of Dongduk Women’s University), the oldest daughter of the recently aired nation wide television show "The 12th child is born," commented “I really enjoyed my visit here to learn magic tricks, learned how to evacuate in emergencies and provide cabin services with my 11 brothers and sisters to my parents.” “If you have many siblings among the family, you have a tendency to argue and fight quite often, but with events like today, it gives us union and 12 times the pleasure to provide service to our parents.” “I hope that in the future, there will be many Dadungyi families.”

Monday, 10 August 2009

The Japan Foundation presents Kendama & Edo-Daikagura UK Tour

Date: 29 August - 6 September 2009
Venue: 29 Aug - Glasgow Botanic Gardens, 30 Aug - University Chapel, University of Glasgow, 31 Aug - URBIS, Manchester, 1 Sep - Wales Millennium Centre, Cardiff, 5 Sep - The Forum, Norwich, 6 Sep - Southbank Centre's Festival Riverside, London

Watch out for spinning cups on umbrellas and flying balls tied to cups! Japanese Kendama (cup-and-ball) maestro, Yusuke Ito and Edo-Daikagura (traditional Japanese circus skill) performer,Senwaka, will tour the UK this summer demonstrating some fine examples of Japanese cultural heritage. This promises to be a truly breathtaking and entertaining performance; a captivating and thrilling event for all the family. At these events, there will also be a chance for audience members to have a go and try these traditional skills for themselves.
This event is presented by the Japan Foundation.
For more information, please contact your local venue or email the Japan Foundation at

The East News