Arts & Living
S. Korea’s Autumn Tinged with French Culture
Associate Editor & Art Director
The new French Ambassador Elisabeth Laurin formally announced the start of the massive French cultural festival in a press conference held at the French Cultural Center in downtown Seoul on Sept. 9th, 2009.
"The role of the participating artists and the presence of the local spectators are the key to our successful hosting of this cultural festival," Amb. Laurin said, “I hope this experience and the interest of Korean people will make this ‘Third FranceExpress’ very successful”
The French envoy said the festival would invite some 200 French artists to attend.Attendees of the conference included Ms. Laure Coudret-Laut, director of the French Cultural Center in Seoul, Director Lim Yeon-Cheol of the National Theater, and Mr. Kim Chul-Lee, artistic director of Seoul Performing Arts Festival. Ms. Coudret-Laut serves as cultural counselor of the French Embassy in Seoul.
A South Korean actress Kim A-Jung (also known as Kim A-Joong) also appeared at the conference. She was recently appointed the French cultural ambassador by the French Embassy.
A variety of cultural events in the field of design, theater, music, exhibition, movies, and street performance will take place during “FranceExpress 2009,” running until December this year.
From Sept. 18th to Nov. 29th, 2009, the Daelim Contemporary Art Museum will hold an exhibition of the late French engineers and designer Jean Prouve's work. Celebrated for transferring manufacturing technology from industry to architecture without losing sight of aesthetic appeal, Prouve represents the practical and the artistic.
From Sept. 9th to Sept 12th, 2009, the National Theater and other theaters in and around Seoul will show contemporary and traditional French dramas.
On Oct. 10th, 2009, lovers of French cinema “Soiree Francaise” will congregate during the evening at PIFF (Pusan International Film Festival) in Busan. The festival will present French films in Busan and Seoul throughout the Fall.
From Dec. 16th, 2009 to March 28th, 2010, FranceExpress will also present six major art exhibitions for local viewers. The Seoul Arts Center will hold an exhibit of the late French Fauvist and Expressionist George Rouault’s paintings. The center will also hold five other exhibitions throughout the festival season.
Expressing excitement about the upcoming festival, Director Coudret-Laut regarded "FranceExpress 2009" as better organized than previous festivals, both in terms of quality and content.
Before the conference ended, Director Coudret-Laut thanked 17 corporations based in France and South Korea for supporting the French cultural festival.
The French Cultural Center said that some 200,000 Koreans and foreigners will enjoy various events during “FranceExpress 2009.”
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Gregory J. Pence serves as Associate Editor & Art Director for The Seoul Times. He graduated from Dartmouth College in 2006, majoring in Government. He also studied international relations at the London School of Economics in England. Many respected publications distributed his cartoons, including The Dartmouth and The Dartmouth Free Press. To view additional cartoons, visit www.toonouttheworld.com.
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