- JARASUM INT'L JAZZ FESTIVAL
Jaraseom Island, Gapyeong Oct 3–6 www.jarasumjazz.com KRW 45,000-110,000 Namchuncheon-bound trains depart from Cheongnyangni Station, stopping at Gapyeong Station.
- The Jarasum International Jazz Festival, held on Jaraseom Island in Gapyeong, is a large-scale jazz event that attracts over 100,000 visitors every year. With fresh autumn air and the island’s colorful mosaic as a backdrop, world-renowned musicians greet the audience with the most amazing tunes under the sun. This year, 50 bands from all around the world will be performing on multiple stages set up throughout the venue. In addition, there will be sales booths displaying and selling diverse art pieces.
Headliners of the four-day event include Ibrahim Maalouf, Madeleine Peyroux, Erik Truffaz Quartet, Kenny Barron Trio, and the Steve Gadd Band. Along with these international stars, the festival contributes to the promotion of local artists, making it of huge interest to local and international fans alike. The festival will kick off with the performance of the Jo Young Deok Trio, who won the Jarasum International Jazz Concours in 2012.
- TYPOJANCHI 2013
Culture Station Seoul 284 Thru Oct 11 T. 02-398-7945, www.typojanchi.org Seoul Station 서울역
(Line 1, 4, Airport), Exit 2
- Typojanchi is a biannual international exhibition of typography to explore various elements of the art as a visible language and a cultural discipline. Under the theme, titled “SUPERTEXT (Typography as Literature),” the 2013 edition explores the dual identity of typography, in the sense that it is as much an art of language as a visual art platform. Through exhibitions, seminars, workshops, and multidisciplinary performances, Typojanchi strives to share with the public the literary potential of typography in the overlap of the two realms.
- PAJU BOOKSORI 2013
Asia Publication Culture & Information Center Sep 28–Oct 6 T. 031-355-0079, www.pajubooksori.org
Take bus 2200 or 200 at Hapjeong Station 합정역 (Line 2, 6), Exit 2
- The Paju BookSori celebrates literature and its history with exhibitions, lectures, performances, and other public-oriented events like book fairs and flea markets. The annual book-themed festival is hosted by Paju, which is home to a cluster of some 260 publishing companies. The exhibition Hangeul Nadri 569 brings together materials drafted in hangeul in the early days of Christianity in Korea. The festival has invited celebrated Japanese poet Shuntaro Tanikawa, acclaimed Korean poet Shin Kyung-lim, and French columnist Guy Sorman.
- 2013 SEOUL PERFORMING ARTS FESTIVAL (SPAF)
Arko Arts Theater, Daehangno Arts Theater Oct 2–26 T. 02-3668-0100, www.spaf.or.kr
Hyehwa Station 혜화역 (Line 4), Exit 2
- Every year, the SPAF challenges the conventional notion that performing arts is only for the supremely intellectual by inviting all who simply enjoy the aesthetics of art and crave something new and fresh. This year, a total of 19 entries—including ten foreign invitational works from France, the US, Belgium, Poland, China, and Japan—will dazzle the audience. The roster consists of eight theatrical works, seven dances, and four multi-genre productions. Some of the highlights include Victor ou les enfants au pouvoir from France, about a boy crying out at the absurdity of life and the laws of the society, and Zbrodnia (The Crime) from Poland, which tells a story of a captivating mystery written by highly praised Polish novelist Witold Gombrowicz. King Lear, a joint production between Korea and Japan, is directed by Suzuki Tadashi, a living legend in Japanese theater history. Of particular note is Sontag: Reborn from the US, which is adapted from renowned author and activist Susan Sontag’s early journals.
- PICASSO DE MALAGA, PICASSO ABSOLUTO
Hangaram Art Museum, Seoul Arts Center Oct 1–Nov 24 T. 1599-2298, picassoabsoluto.com Nambu Bus Terminal Station 남부터미널역
(Line 3), Exit 5
- Some 200 pieces of artwork by Pablo Picasso—including prints and drawings—as well as historical data are on view in southern Seoul. The collection is on loan from the Malaga-based Picasso Foundation. The exhibition is divided into four topics: Picasso’s women, explorations of human nature, his views on still life and fauna, and Picasso as an illustrator. In addition, some 100 rare photographs on display offer a glimpse into his personal life, building a complete understanding of Picasso’s artistic career. The photography is the work of renowned Hungarian artist Juan Geynes, who worked in Spain.
- LIFE PHOTOGRAPHY EXHIBITION
Sejong Center for the Performing Arts Sep 6–Nov 25 KRW 12,000 T. 02-747-7790, www.seelife.co.kr
- An exhibition of 130 classic images from the LIFE Picture Collection is now under way in Seoul, under three themes, “People,” “Moments,” and “Life.” Various iconic figures like Pablo Picasso, Audrey Hepburn, Charlie Chaplin, Leonard Bernstein, and Elvis Presley are captured in the people section, while World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, Apollo 11, and other historic moments make up another theme. In particular, the exhibition includes a rare image of the 1949 assassination of independence fighter and political leader Kim Gu.
- GIMJE HORIZON FESTIVAL
Byeokgolje Reservoir Oct 2–6 T. 063-540-3114, festival.gimje.go.kr Express bus lines from Central City Bus Terminal available
- This regional festival is held every autumn to uphold agricultural traditions as well as to appreciate the artistic richness of Korea. One awesome thing about Gimje is its flatness—the inspiration for this rice farming town’s festival. A wide range of fun programs will be on offer, including a samulnori (traditional percussion quartet) contest, a rural landscape drawing contest, harvest rituals, and a traditional wedding. Visitors will be given an opportunity to experience rice harvesting, oxcart riding, Korean wrestling, straw handicraft, and locust catching.
- 2013 K-BALLET WORLD
Seoul Arts Center, Oct 12–23 KRW 20,000–70,000 T. 02-538-0505, www.koreaballet.or.kr Nambu Bus Terminal Station 남부터미널역 (Line 3), Exit 5.
- Organized by the Korea Ballet Association, the K-Ballet World festival will present many contemporary performances and classical repertoire from diverse troupes. The opening gala evening will feature Fresco of Korea’s Universal Ballet, Cherry Pink and Apple Blossom White of France’s Eric Gauthier Dance Company, and 1X1=? of the Seoul Ballet Theater. Some of Korea’s future ballet leaders, including Han Sung-woo of the American Ballet Theater, will team up to present Don Quixote and Giselle, among many classic works.
- NEW MEDIA EXHIBITION FROM THE CENTRE POMPIDOU
National Museum of Contemporary Art Oct 2–Dec 31 T. 02-2188-6000, www.mmca.go.kr Seoul Grand Park Station 서울대공원역 (Line 4), Exit 4. Take the shuttle bus.
- The Video Vintage: 1963–1983 looks at the birth of video art and its historical development in the context of contemporary art though representative new media artworks from the collection of the Centre Pompidou. The collection dates back to the early 1960s, when video was first used as a means of artistic expression. The collection also features the 1980s, when video art developed in association with various genres such as performance, film, music, dance, television, and literature. Eighty works by fifty artists, including video artists Nam June Paik and Bill Viola and film director Jean Luc-Godard, will go on display.
- RA RA RIOT
Club FF Oct 31 KRW 35,000–40,000 T. 011-9025-3407, supercolorsuper.com
- The American indie rock band, consisting of vocalist Wes Miles, bassist Mathieu Santos, guitarist Milo Bonacci, violinist Rebecca Zeller, and drummer Kenny Bernard, will be haunting Korea for a Halloween show. The band was formed in Syracuse, New York, in 2007. In 2011, Ra Ra Riot was nominated for the 10th Annual Independent Music Awards as the Pop/Rock Album Nominee. Most recently, the band’s third studio album, Beta Love, marks a shift in their musical style away from their earlier baroque pop sound and more towards synthpop.
- THE CHORUS; OEDIPUS
LG Arts Center Oct 9–20 KRW 50,000 T. 02-2005-0114, www.lgart.com
- Directed by Seo Jae-hyung and composed by Choe U-zong, this piece weaves together music, dance, and drama. This stage production emphasizes the existence of the “chorus,” a key characteristic of ancient Greek drama. Although faithful to the original form of the play, it also aspires to successfully transform itself into a modern musical play. The minimal, circular stage, the powerful energy of the male actors, and the modern but unforgettable melody will maintain a sense of tension among audience members.
- BUSAN INT'L FILM FESTIVAL (BIFF)
Centum City, Haeundae, Nampo-dong Oct 3–12 T. 1688-3010, www.biff.kr It takes three hours to get from Seoul to Busan by KTX.
- The BIFF, considered one of the most significant film festivals in Asia, is returning to Busan with 301 movies from 70 countries. Among them, 137 entries will record world premieres. Since its establishment in 1996, BIFF has focused on introducing and supporting new Asian directors and their films. Opening the festival will be Vara: A Blessing, which revolves around Bhutan’s traditional Bharatanatyam dance and tells the story of two lovers and their self-sacrifice through beautiful imagery. The 2013 Bhutanese feature was directed by Khyentse Norbu.