China, Japan and Korea Art Festival and Culture Ministers’ Meeting

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Experience of three countries’ cultures which seem similar but are different

Culture reporter: Kim Eun-jeong, Translated by: Kim Yae-seol( Duncan Elder)


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From the photo exhibition and video promotion hall of  the 2016 East Asia Culture Cities event,
we learned that the cultures of Korea, Japan, and China are both similar yet different.
In the exhibition hall, tourists slowed down their steps and stopped to appreciate the views of Ningbo, Nara, and Jeju.
In the promotion hall, people can experience different cultures and enjoy the pictures of these three cities.
In the Nara promotion hall, Nara toys named Naramachi Karakuri, are exhibited for people to play with.
Children fall in love with these charming animal toys like mice, cats, tigers and rabbits.
Ms.Asada Keiko told us that in Japan mice and cats are common and that is why they make toys in the shapes of these two animals.
We can find cats and mice in Korea, but it is rare to make toys in their shapes. After seeing this visitors could see there are differences between the two countries cultures.
The picture of Tōdai-ji temple is exhibited in the Nara photo exhibition. It is one of the biggest wooden structures in the world.

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The traditional clothes like wedding clothes and Qipao are displayed in the Ningbo,China promotion hall.
The fancy and colorful traditional wedding clothes catch the attention of the tourists.
Qipao was made by people at the end of the Qing Dynasty and the designs were influenced by Manchu clothing.
Ms.Kim Ji-eun tried on a Qipao and said, “The person in charge of the booth found the right Qipao for me, but it’s still hard to breathe.”
Qipao is a dress that sticks to the body and makes it hard to move. However, it gives the wearer a perfect body line.
If it seems like Japanese toys are too fine to play with, the Chinese toys give off a more familiar feeling. In fact,
Chinese toys like kites and tabors are similar to the toys found in Korea.

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In the Jeju booth, professionals from the Tamna Tea Culture Center introduced Jeju tea and homemade rice cakes. The Jeju Chrysanthemum Tea has a rich smell.
In the booth, the visitors could try the Cactus Yakan, Fig Jeonggwa and Mushroom Jeonggwa which they can only try in exhibitions. In the traditional cloth booth, the guide explained haenyeo and their clothes.

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Another event, the flea market, was full of performers and listeners, sellers who sell wooden chopping boards, bookmarks, candles and hats and buyers who want to buy Jeju handmade  artworks.
A lady from Nohyeong said: “ I have been to many flea markets, but this flea market has the best atmosphere.
I bought the candles for visitors to Jeju…There is East Asia City Traditional  Culture Experience event? I should go there!”
After the interview, she excitedly went on her way to the exhibition halls.

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Ms. Yoon So-young is the seller of the handmade art horse and hats and the owner of the Haenyeo stable.
During the interview, she keeps sewing hats and told us, “This is the first time I have participated as a seller. Since my husband has a basil farm, we want to promote basal to everyone.
I brought some handmade hats and horse dolls. The hats are all sold out and the one I’m sewing is the last one. On the other hand, no one bought the basil seeds. I don’t know if I should feel happy or sad about it.”

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 In the center of the market, there was a person, completely covered in plaster, who is surrounded by kids. It was a plaster cast mine performance.
He didn’t move even though some kids touched his hand.
“ Hello, how are you?”
“……………..”
We tried to interview him, but the only answer was silence.
The plaster cast artist is Mr. Matthew. He also sells the accessories he used as the tools in his performance.

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“If you laugh, happiness will come.” is the message of cellist Moon Ji-yoon’s performance the Fool and Cellist.
He believes that when you smile at hardship, everything will become happy.