Saturday, July 2, 2011

Farewell to Seoul: fireworks and fast food

On our last day in Seoul, we visited the National Museum to view the greatest treasures of Korea. The museum is massive, accommodating thousands of visitors and featuring multiple buildings, each with different cultural collections. Here is the entrance with a glass atrium for welcoming and orienting visitors to other parts of the complex.
This large pagoda was disassembled and restored within the multistoried historical hall. Visitors can view it from different floors and see details that were not originally accessible in situ.
This musuem is beautiful with plenty of resting places so people are really encouraged to contemplate the art and the history. Here is another view of the galleries in the historical building. There are sculptures, architectural details and paintings, some intimate portraits and other massive temple works
There are many amazing works of Silla and other ancient societies not in Gyeongju, along with more modern works which we didn't even see. This pillar is representative of many temple monumemts, featuring the turtle pedestal and a dragon capital. These were freestanding, left in memory of important community individuals.
As we left, we heard loud booming and found a fireworks display taking place over the Han River. What a finish to our trip! These were beautiful and some skyrockets were unlike any I had ever seen.

We arrived at Incheon International Airport early and found our plane home was late. Exploring the airport, we found a food court with Korean favorites and this seeming satirical poster advising travelers about American food. We stuck with bibimbap.
Also in the airport shopping mall, there was a procession of actors in Chosun dynasty costumes to represent the crown prince, his consort and entourage. Like Disneyland or Universal Studios, the actors posed so visitors could take their pictures. Looks like our favorite dramas, eh?

  Here in Incheon airport is a bookstore, craft making space and shop. While waiting for your air transportation connection, you can learn about Korean craft approaches by doing. We were impressed by the practical knowledge people had of art and art tradtions world wide and especially about Korean traditions before departure home.

No comments: