Your Seoul Exhibition Guide

Must-See Shows This Week

Wondering what’s on view and what to see? Let us be your guide to exploring the Seoul art scene. Scroll through for our favorite exhibitions up now and check back weekly for fresh updates to this list. Happy arting!

Catherine Opie at Lehmann Maupin | ArtDrunk

Catherine Opie at Lehmann Maupin

Quick! Think of two subjects for a photography show. We’d bet that LGBTQ+ portraits and images of the Pacific Ocean aren’t the first pairing to come to mind. Enter Catherine Opie and her latest exhibition. She brings together two iconic bodies of work, different in imagery but bound by how they explore community. Her Portraits on the gallery’s first floor are styled after Renaissance portraiture, highlighting each individual’s unique features while creating connections to a larger community (via the monochromatic backgrounds). The seascapes were taken when Opie traveled on a container ship from Korea to California. There’s this sense of global community because it’s impossible to know where exactly she took each photo – these views are universal and become a connecting thread across cultures.

Exhibition Site

Yoo Youngkuk at Kukje | ArtDrunk

Yoo Youngkuk at Kukje Gallery

Exploring Yoo Youngkuk’s exhibition is to explore the mountainous landscapes of Korea and the blues of the surrounding seas (without needing to leave Seoul). The show takes over all three spaces at Kukje, covering both the artist’s earlier abstractions and his later, more refined forms. Regardless of where you venture in the show, you’ll experience bursts of pure color – sun-baked mountains next to blue peaks at dusk. Yoo finds a way to capture the sensations of nature at all times of day. Some have a slight tinge of sadness – he battled many illnesses towards the end of his life – but ultimately culminate in a peaceful feeling. A series of Yoo’s photographs are also on view, giving a rare glimpse into the inspirations behind the Korean modernist’s paintings. 

Exhibition Site

Hito Steyerl at MMCA Seoul | ArtDrunk

Hito Steyerl at MMCA Seoul

Imagine stepping into the hard drive of a video-based artist who has been working for over 30 years. Now throw in some Tron aesthetics and you have yourself the immersive experience that makes up Hito Steyerl’s exhibition at MMCA. Featuring 23 of her works, the show takes you through her journey understanding our increasingly digital world. At first, this is the kind of show that may leave you a bit puzzled. But give it a chance and you’ll start to see the relevance of her art. Politics, technology, and social media all emerge as themes while she takes a critical look at how images are produced and shared today. Speaking of sharing, give us a shout on Instagram with your pictures from the show! 

Exhibition Site

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