Once a dilapidated neighborhood made up of factories and makeshift shacks during the 1970s, Ihwa Mural Village has since been redeveloped into an outdoor cultural art space, thanks to the beautification efforts of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism. Stretching from the quintessentially Korean neighborhood of Ihwa to the beautifully manicured Naksan Park, the streets that wind through the somewhat ramshackle residential area are a collection of art installations, sculptures, murals and signboards created by over seventy different artists. The best way to explore this area is by getting lost, which allows visitors to discover some of the more obscure works. The added bonus of great city views make Ihwa worth visiting in the evening as well.
Before walking into the Kukje Gallery, look up: on the roof of the building is "Walking Woman on the Roof," a self-described installation piece by American artist Jonathan Borofsky. The gallery opened in 1982 and has a total of three exhibition halls, which in turn are each divided into smaller exhibition spaces with separators. Kukje Gallery came onto the arts radar in 2003, when video artist Bill Viola and Anish Kapoor each held solo shows here. The museum's core exhibitions highlight internationally acclaimed artists with contemporary art backgrounds.
Hyundai card design library features 15,000 rare design books. The library’s exterior was constructed in a method similar to a traditional Korean house. The entrance was built with black bricks and the windows and crossbeams are covered in Korean paper, translating the beauty of traditional architecture into something modern.”
You might be thinking, “Why is there a museum for figures and figurines?” Well, many of us ‘normal’ people might be tempted to dismiss it as a place for the obsessed, but you might want to think again. Figure Museum W, located in Cheongdam-dong, is a place to either renew your love of or learn about a new potential hobby of collecting, building, and trading figure models. With a serious collection of models that range in price from the thousands to couple 100 million wons, it’s undoubtedly Seoul’s special mecca for dukhoos (people focused on a specific hobby or subject) of this sort. For those of us who consider ourselves ‘normal’, it will be an eye-opening experience in learning both the delicacies and grandiose of this art form. The 1000 or so models that are on display are all part of a private collection. The two co-owners of the museum are elementary school friends and have been avid collectors of figures and art toys for a while. They, along with two more friends, came together to create this special space within Seoul to display their belongings. Most well known animation characters from Korea, Japan and the US can be spotted here, all of which range in size. If you’ve ever wondered what it would feel like to stand next to Ironman and take a selfie, you’ll be able to do just that. Life-size figures include the Terminator (with the actual leather jacket Arnold Schwarzenegger wore), Ironman, Batman, Spiderman, the Hulk, and even the Joker. The most prized item, on the o