Monday, July 31, 2017

contrasts

I love that these sites in Seoul can coexist within 500 m radius.

Thousands of white lanterns representing the dead Bongeunsa Temple and 50 000 books at the new COEX Starfield Library across the road. Must say that the both places were very relaxing. 


Seoul: Milestone Coffee

서울시 강남구 신사동 554-4
Seoul, South Korea
(49 Nonhyeon-ro 159-gil, Sinsa-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul)

The best matcha affogato




Sunday, July 30, 2017

Seoul: Coffee Hanyakbang

I am always joking that all I do in Seoul is drinking coffee at as many different coffee shops as possible. Most of them look and feel more or less the same - white floors, house plants, neon signs, hip typography on the walls, and most of all - easily forgotten. 

Last week I came across an hidden gem that I'll probably remember for years from now. It was so amazing that I even went back the next day to try other items in the menu and take more photos.

Coffee Hanyakbang ( 커피한약방  )
Address: 16-6 Samil-daero 12-gil, Jung-gu, Seoul, Korea
서울 중구 삼일대로12길 16-6 커피한약방 )
Euljiro-3ga Station

 Hanyakbang is hided in a small alley amongst shabby buildings in Euljiro. And by small, I really mean it, I hardly fit through this "street". Before that I circled around the block for 20 minutes to even find the right place. 
I can't even imagine how did they even transport all the equipment and furniture there..

Once I stepped in the coffee shop, I felt like I was instantly transported into Wong Kar-wai movie scene (If you have seen In The Mood For Love, you know what I'm talking about). The cafe is delicately decorated with exquisite antique furniture, some of this coming directly from China, for example the medicine cabinet and a spectacular counter inlaid with mother-of-pearl. Their drip coffee is reasonably priced and barista makes sure he knows your taste preference before choosing the beans. They even roast the coffee beans in the shop manually (so the whole place smells heavenly!) Can't get any more artisan than that.

Besides coffee being delicious, it's one of the few cafes I've been here that doesn't blast load K-pop music all day every day.. instead they have a collection of old records they switch from time to time. While I was there, they were playing Chuck Berry.

Second floor features a huge wooden table for those who wish to work on their laptops (feels very out of place though..), more antique lamps, sofas, and a huge decorative wall piece inlaid with mother-of-pearl.






Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Seoul: Unhyeongung Royal Residence

The best sights are the ones you stumble upon by accident while aimlessly walking around in the city

464 Samil-daero, Jongno-gu, Seoul
서울특별시 종로구 삼일대로 464 (운니동)


Avenuel July 2017: Art Issue

My favorite job in Seoul so far must be this editorial shot for Avenuel magazine. 
The whole concept was based on interpreting noteworthy examples of performance art of 20th century. It was so much more exciting to work on than yet another Gucci-Prada filled fashion editorial.



Marina Abramovic with Ulay – Rest Energy

'Pose Work for Plinths 3', Bruce McLean, 1971


Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker

Tehching Hsieh, Linda Montano, Art/Life One Year Performance 1983 –1984

Marina Abramovic and Ulay
Imponderabilia 1977
  Breathing in- Breathing out, 1977


Saturday, July 15, 2017

Seoul Olympic Park and Sculpture Garden

Dialogue, 1989, by Mohand Amara


Self-portrait by Frank Dornself

World Peace Gate



Friday, July 14, 2017

Hannam-Dong Seoul

Hannam-Dong is quickly becoming one of my favourite neighborhoods in Seoul with a huge concentration of independently run coffee shops and designer boutiques.

Visited Maison Marais showroom to pick up some goodies and pictures we shot together in Miami back in April. 


With the designer behind the scenes of new summer look book shoot

And later coffee at the newest place in the neighborhood - Low Coffee Hannam
한남동 683-5, Seoul, South Korea





Sunday, July 9, 2017

statement circles

Visited local designers' market in Gangnam last weekend and came across very special jewelry brands Goiu and A.NeujacAfter having a little chat with the designer, I found out that she had actually studied jewelry design in Tallinn, Estonia for some time. What a small world! 

The choice was really tough but I opted for a simple circle (single) earring from Goiu. Well, considering the size, it's actually far from simple and minimal... Despite the look, it's actually very lightweight (14K gold-plated brass) and easy to wear. 

Honestly, it is tempting to buy cheap and trendy costume jewelry in Seoul, because the selection is really good, but I am happy to rather invest in small local brands and handmade jewelry. 

Thursday, July 6, 2017

SEOUL: Whanki Museum

A museum devoted to Kim Whanki, a pioneering abstract artist of Korea in 20th century.





SEOUL: Mountain Corner

Sanmotoongi (literally "mountain corner") is a coffee shop nestled somewhere between Bugaksan and Inwangsan mountains offering excellent views to the both. Getting there was part of the fun. I took a bus to Buam-Dong neighborhood and continued walking through quiet hilly residential area (at some point I ended up in someone's backyard and cornfield ?) Was dripping sweat and hardly breathing when I finally arrived in the cafe. 

Sanmotoongi (산모퉁이)
 153, Baekseokdong-gil Jongno-gu Seoul 110-816 

 The cafe became extremely popular after appearing in Korean drama The 1st Shop of Coffee Prince, so be ready to pay 6-8€ for a coffee, but it is definitely worth the view (and the excruciating walk uphills)




Seoul Fortress Wall in the background and a remainder of the war

As I decided to explore the area more, my afternoon stroll literally became a hike including trekking through the forest of Baeksasil Valley. Later it took me hours the find the way out back to the civilization (and any kind of public transportation). 


On of the small roads I found this temple where quiet music was playing and lanterns were blowing in the wind with mountainous landscape in the background. There was no people in sight and it all felt very surreal and magical. One of those pinch-yourself kind of moments...



Saturday, July 1, 2017

SEOUL FOOD: Sobok ice cream

Sobok ice cream cafe in Hongdae, Seoul is something I wanted to try out already last spring, but there were always crazy long lines outside the cafe. Now, this one rainy and windy afternoon I was the only crazy one who wanted ice cream so they had a plenty of free seating. 

Sobok signature ice cream is made of brown rice, topped with injeolmi balls (a kind of Korean rice cake made), pumpkin seeds, and jocheong (a traditional sweet rice syrup). It has a very special taste which is hard to describe..something between sweet and savory, ..a bit nutty.

Sobok Cafe
서울 마포구 어울마당로 58
58, Eoulmadang-ro, Mapo-gu, Seoul (Sangsu Station)