Culture and Identity, Kokdu and me

To go with the opening of the KCC’s summer exhibition Korean Funerary Figures: Companions for the Journey to the Other World, the president of the museum which is lending these figures will be giving a talk about her 30 year passion for Kokdu.

Culture and Identity, Kokdu and me: 30 Years of Art Management

DATE & VENUE: Wednesday 11 July 2012, 16.30 / Korean Cultural Centre UK
Speaker: Kim Ock Rang, Director of Kokdu Museum

Kim Ock RangHer desire to preserve the abandoned Kokdu led Kim to 30 years of systematic collection and study. Her work has assisted in raising awareness of this aspect of Korea’s folklore and now the Kokdu figurines are professionally researched and protected through the Kokdu Museum.

In relation to KCCUK’s summer 2012 exhibition, Korean Funerary Figures: Companions for the Journey to the Other World, Kim Ock Rang will talk about her 30 years of art management ever since she encountered Kokdu. Her mission of ‘recreation of abandoned’ expanded from founding Kokdu Theatre Company and publishing Kokdu Magazine to establishing Dongsoong Art Centre, Ock Rang Culture Foundation, and Kokdu Museum in order to develop Kokdu into various art genres and to support isolated artists. For her, culture is people and their lives itself.

Kim Ock Rang is the founder and also currently president of Kokdu Museum and Dongsoong Art Center, the first private complex cultural space in Korea. Kokdu Museum which was founded in 2010 has about 20 thousand collections of Kokdu, the Korean traditional wood carving, and shows varied exhibitions, educations, products, and publications based on Kokdu.

The Kokdu figurines would have been placed on and around the funeral biers that were used to transport people to their mountain burial sites. These figures offer guidance, wisdom and beauty, helping the deceased on their journey to the other side and offering solace to the mourners.

Pre-booking necessary via or phone 0207 004 2600

One thought on “Culture and Identity, Kokdu and me

  1. Yun Chung

    I have no idea who started using kokdu for 꼭두. It is wrong.
    Korea has been using two Romanization systems: MR (McCune-Reischauer), based on their 1939 paper, and RR (Revised Romanization), which the Korean Government decreed in July 2000 as of the official Romanization system.
    The Korean word 꼭두 would be Romanized to kkokdu according to RR or kkoktu according to MR. Kokdu is a basterdized Romanization word that does not conform to either system and should not have been used as a museum name or as a Korean noun for 꼭두. Non-Koreans, including British, would pronounce kokdu as 콕두, not as 꼭두.
    My guess is that the Museum chose to use “kokdu” because neither “kkokdu” nor “kkoktu” looks like an English word. Whoever did so did wrong because Korean is not English, Romanized or not.
    Teach British how to say 꼭두 (kkokdu), not 콕두 (kokdu).

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