Dapsimni Antique Shopping Mall has been selling antiques for more than 30 years and it is relatively quiet. Pieces of antique furniture, such as the wooden floorboards from an old house, the doors of a hanok, antique drawings and porcelain pieces grab your attention for some reason. Most people think of Insadong when talking about Korean antiques, but those who are in the know consider Dapsimni Antique Shopping Mall to be the best. Most of the antique merchants here have the eye to distinguish genuine artifacts from counterfeits, the skills to fix wooden and porcelain pieces and the expertise to figure out the origins of different curios. Currently, there are about 140 stores located in this arcade, which is openfrom 7am to 7pm.
An insider's talk
I used to sell antiques in Insadong and came to the Antique Shopping Mall three years ago. Things really don’t sell these days. Someone who has been doing this since the Korean War says it’s now worse than it was during the war. The economy hasn’t been too good and there are lots of other reasons, but most of all, the artifacts are not very old. This blue and white porcelain came from Japan and is more than 300 years old. The rocks, orchids and the poetry drawn on it create a great sense of harmony. This piece is a source of pleasure for me these days.