Monday, July 28, 2014

The Fifth Jinan International Photography Biennial to be Conducted in November 2014

Jinan, which is the capital city of Shandong Province in China, appears to be an important place for photography.  Beginning November 1, 2014, the Fifth Jinan International Photography Biennial will be held in Jinan.  Unfortunately, I cannot find a reference as to where the event will be held.  If anyone does know the specific location, please inform me.

Update - 2014/10/27:  Chunyang Zhang, who lives in Jinan, informed me in the comments section below this article that the biennial will be held at Shandong University of Art and Design.  Thank you very much for sharing this information!  This is what she wrote:

"It will be held at Shandong University of Art & Design, in Chinese 山东工艺美院..."

Photography submissions are being accepted until September 20, 2014.  There is an academic theme, and there is an exhibition theme, though I'll have you read all about it for yourself.

To learn about the biennial, to read how submit images for the photo competitions, and to find out who is involved in this, please visit the English language website here.

To access the main website that is written in Chinese, please click this link.  There is an "English" button at the top of the page; however, it didn't work for me.  If it works for you, please let me know.

At the first website I shared, there is a brief mention about Shandong Province being the birthplace of pinhole imaging.  I did a bit of research about that claim, and I found an interesting article written by Jon Grepstad about the history of pinhole imaging and pinhole photography.  His article can be read at located here.

I'll see you there!

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Art In Suncheon

Though a beautiful city, Suncheon doesn't have a large collection of art galleries in the city proper.  A few can be found near the fashion district, and there are a couple here and there outside of the city.  

My favorite art gallery to visit in Suncheon doesn't look like a gallery, nor is it near the fashion district.  It is located along the Dongcheon, which is the river that cuts through the city.  After the building was erected a few short years ago, I decided to go into the place after taking a long walk on the river walk, because all the signs said that it was a restaurant and a cafe.  I thought I would catch my breath and have something cold to drink.  The art hit me as soon as I walked through the doors.  All along the walls some sort of art can be found.  There were even a couple of small installations, too.

To make a long story bearable, I was able to meet the artist and his wife who own and operate the restaurant/cafe/gallery.  He has done a lot of work both inside and outside of the building.  Once the couple learned that I like photography, they said that they would show me their gallery located downstairs.  It is nice, and the work that is exhibited is very, very nice.  I won't spoil it for you, so you will have to take a look for yourself.

I've taken some of my Korean friends to the gallery, and they have asked me how I found out about it since it isn't obvious.  I replied that I found out about it the same way I learned about many places in this area:  I walk to it, bus to it, or have someone drive me to it, and I start talking to people.

Here are a couple of photographs of the gallery.

Resto Cafe
© Mark Eaton

Resto Cafe II
© Mark Eaton

It is located on the eastern side of the Dongcheon.  If you walk along the river walk, be it northward or southward, you will see it for this simple reason:  the river walk was constructed in such a way that it raises out of the river basin to the front of the building.  And then it drops back into the basin.  You can drive there, of course.

I would ask about seeing the art in the gallery only after the hostess seated me, and only after I ordered coffee or a meal.  It is a nice way for everyone to become familiar with everyone. 

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

The Artifacts of Teaching

A teacher can collect a lot of things over the course of a career.  These are just some realia, props, visual aids, gadgets, and gizmos I have used while teaching all manner of students in South Korea.  If I had a favorite, it would be the rabbit skeleton.  

Unknown to me, a rabbit had died in our flower garden; however, I didn't discover it until I cleaned and prepared the garden for winter.  It is possible that it clashed with one of the feral cats that frequent the neighborhood.  I cooked and cleaned the rabbit.  It is covered until I teach a science component to my students.  My students have never seen anything like it.

The Artifacts of Teaching
© Mark Eaton

I was a licensed private teacher in Suncheon, but that is all but finished at this time.  I shall move to a different exotic land in the not too distant future.  To be honest, it is time to move on.

A person who is knowledgeable about Korean culture will appreciate the one symbolic feature in the image above.