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* Date : 2019-12-18

Where a Thousand-Year-Life Dwells
Gyeongsangbuk-do’s Architectural Culture
Korea and Koreans, Not Easily Understandable Entities

How do foreigners view Koreans? Korea achieved industrialization and urbanization faster than any other nation in the world, while a cultural heritage over 500 years coexists within its downtown area. It promotes a materialistic mindset which always insists on hurrying things, and yet emphasizes a sense of reverence toward elders. Its culture also pursues Western aesthetics, yet disallows the wearing of shoes inside households. There are still many aspects to Koreans that foreigners find too complex to understand.

The Answer to Their Behavior Lies in their Architecture!

However, this is someone who goes on a journey in search of a unique way to understand such Koreans better. Mr. Laurent Pereira travels around Gyeongsangbuk-do Province to get a wider grasp of Korea and Koreans. That is because architecture, being the mirror reflecting the locals’ lives, can offer an indirect experience of their thoughts and values. Gyeongsangbuk-do Province, in particular, is where several UNESCO world cultural heritage sites are located, and presents the optimum site for an architectural tour with its Gaya, Silla, Goryeo and Joseon period cultural monuments.

Korean Traditional Architecture Aesthetics As Seen by a Western Architect

Architect Laurent Pereira and TV personality Bae Da-song tour around Bongjeongsa and Yongmunsa Temples, which saw their revival in the Goryeo period, Dosanseowon and Byeongsanseowon Academies, on which Joseon’s scholar culture was based, Chehwajeong and Hansujeong Pavilions, which stand for the noblemen’s appreciation of the arts and architecture, and the thatched houses and head houses customized to the lives of different social classes. A careful examination is done on the architecture over 1,400 years through the Silla, Goryeo and Joseon periods, bearing witness to how the lives and thoughts of Koreans have changed. What uniquely Korean aesthetics in Korean traditional architecture did the Western architect notice? How about you partake in the appreciation of the buildings which embody the ancestors’ lives and spirit, along with the beautiful surrounding nature which completes them?

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