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Moran Museum of Art , Korea
472-844, 246-1, Wolsan-ri, Whado-eup, Namyangju-shi, Kyungki-do, KOREA
Tel : 82-31-594-8001~2, Fax : 82-31-594-6335, http://www.moranmuseum.org

Located in a pleasant and beautiful natural environment in Masuk, Kyungki-do, Moran Museum of Art opened on April 28, 1990. Moran Art Museum is a multiplex comtemporary art space who collects, possesses, exhibits and introduces fine contemporary art works from inside and outside of Korea. Specially, the museum devote to the role as a link of a cultural band of the region throughout Seoul, Kyungki-do, and Chuncheon and to contribute to flourish the sculpture art in Korea.

In the open air exhibition space of 28,380§³ of area, there are displayed the sculpture art works of the famous artists from inside and outside of Korea. And there are plane and 3 dimensional art works in the indoor exhibition space(947§³ of area) through permanent or special exhibition.

Moran Art Museum is not only serving its visitors as a space for leisurely walk and contemplation and is also trying to satisfy the spectators' cultural desire providing various things to enjoy from all artistic genre in the outdoor music stage and spacious garden in the museum.


¤ıOutdoor exhibition area

Outdoor exhibition area of 28,000§³ with a streamline shaped lawn.


¤ıIndoor exhibition area

Indoor exhibition area consists of 4 exhibition rooms and 6 exhibition spaces, and in the exhibition room with a round terrace, there held special and permanent exhibitions showing the development of contemporary sculpture art.  


¤ıOutdoor music stage

Artistic experience in the outdoor sculpture garden harmonized with music



Space for academic seminar and study presentation
Warehouse/ It is one of the important facilities where the art works and materials are kept.


¤ıMoran museum academy

Programs focused on the field experience are provided for youths and adults  in the region.


¤ıPapua New Guinea tribe art

70 art works from Papua New Guinea tribe art with nature friendly and romantic characteristics are collected and displayed in permanent exhibition.

¤ıMaterial room donated by Kim Jung Sook(1917~1991)

Working tool, unfinished works, models, and plaster prototype are displayed.


Exhibition planning, supporting artists, publication, education.

¤ıSculpture Now

This is a biennial special exhibition with a theme focusing on artists who established the originality in his/her artistic carrier.


¤ıMoran sculpture Grand Prix exhibition

Moran sculpture Grand Prix is awarded to an artist who attracts close attention and support the artist's creative activity.


¤ıMoran Museum education program

An education program provided to youths from Namyangju and vicinity Gyeonggi province in every summer vacation.


¤ıHeuknori clay art academy

Clay art academy is a creative and mental healing program using the soft and easy to express material of clay in the green wood.


¤ıMoran Art Museum series and art works publication

In 2001, at its 11th anniversary, Moran Art Museum published 'Moran Art Museum series' to look through the development of contemporary sculpture art from the birth of the modern sculpture art, and it is also publishing art books of modern and contemporary Korean artists. 


Moran Museum of Art , Korea
472-844, 246-1, Wolsan-ri, Whado-eup, Namyangju-shi, Kyungki-do, KOREA
Tel : 82-31-594-8001~2, Fax : 82-31-594-6335, http://www.moranmuseum.org

CHOI Tae-man
(Art Critic, Professor at Kook Min University)

Namyangju in which the Moran Museum of Art is located is a city situated northeast from Seoul. It not only has the gorgeous natural environment which the Bukhan-gang joins the Namhan-gang, but is called 'the district of practical science' as there is the grave of Dasan Jeong Yak-Yong nearby. Since the Moran Museum of Art is near the national road No.46 (Kyeongchun National Road), we can see the road packed with cars in the holiday season every year. The Moran Museum of Art is often mentioned in magazines as a tourist attraction, as it is close to Seoul and there is the Moran park behind the art museum. However, the Moran Museum of Art is not just an odorable sculpture park where you can have fun within a day. It is, in fact, a specialized art museum that covers diverse areas in art.

The Moran Museum of Art opened in 1990, and held the 'Expressions of Sculpture toward the 21st century' exhibition from April 28 to Jun 30 in celebration of the opening. A number of sculptors graduated from various colleges were invited to present their works. They are KIM Yun, KIM Yun-wha, KIM Ik-tae, KIM Jin-seong, KIM Hong-gon, RYU In, PARK Sang-sook, PARK Hi-sun, SHIN Dal-ho, SIM Jeong-soo, LEE Yeon-soo, LEE Won-kyeong, JANG Dae-il, JEON Hang-seob, JI Kyeong-soo, CHOI Byeong-min, CHOI Seong-ho and CHOI Jong-gul. In the exhibition catalogue, SHIM Kwang-hyun said, "The unique management style of the art museum with a additional role to promote local art across Seoul, Kyeongki and Kangwon region and its physical location of being near the cemetery park involve a possibility to be a basis that can contribute to the growth of our art culture in diverse ways".

Since the Moran Museum of Art has grown into one that plays a role to help local art and Korean sculpture flourish within a short period of time, his anticipation has come true. It could also gain a firm foothold as a sculpture park by possessing most of the works presented at the exhibition held in celebration of the opening. After the sculpture park was shaped on a full-scale, it planned and presented the 'Groping and Prospect for Korean Sculpture" exhibition in celebration of the first anniversary with CHOI Tae-man as a curator. As the name of the exhibition tells it all, the exhibition invited sculptors who mainly express human existence and social issues with form other than academic body sculptures and they are KIM Byeong-wha, KIM Ju-ho, KIM Chang-sae, KIM Hong-gon, DO Hak-hee, RYU In, PARK Hi-sun, BAE Hyeong-kyeong, BAEK Yun-ki, SIM Jeong-soo, YU Hyang-sook, LEE Yeon-soo, LEE Won-kyeong, LEE Jong-bin, IM Young-sun, JANG Dae-il, CHOI Byeong-min, HEO Wi-Young and HONG Soon-mo. The exhibition planned by me was intended to provide an opportunity for visitors to look back at their life as well as aesthetic appreciation by introducing works that reflect human life fin earnest with the Moran Park situated behind the art museum in consideration. However, it was also likely that the intention to deliver such aspects might have let the art museum give gloomy and heavy impressions. Despite that, works such as <Cardinal Perception> by RYU In and <People-Today> by IM Young-sun effectively delivered a message that figurative sculpture is not conventional and old-fashioned, but is, in fact, fresh.

  It should also be remembered that the art museum, which opened as an outdoor sculpture gallery in Kyeongki-do, became well known both within the country and internationally through the Moran International Sculpture Symposium held in 1992. The symposium was held from July 21 to August 13 with a workshop set outdoors. It featured various artists from across the world including KIM Pyeong-sik and SEONG Dong-hoon from Korea, Mark Brusse from the Netherlands, Mihaly Gabor from Hungary, Dusan Kralik from Slovakia, Luciano Massari from Italy, Salo Saul from Israel, Georgy Tchapkanov from Bulgaria and Alberto Guzman from Peru. It was the first international symposium held in Korea since the one in celebration of the Seoul Olympics 1988. Since it was successfully presented with overseas artists on a limited budget, it was a valuable experience for me as well.

  Prior to the sculpture Symposium, I and PARK Hi-sun, who passed away in 1997, took a trip to Europe to meet artists. All the participating artists, except for Gabor from Hungary and Tchapkanov whose works were once exhibited in Japan, were selected by public subscription. In the mean time, interestingly, Mark Brusse and Alberto Guzman made their applications for subscription. As a result, The Moran Museum of Art had an opportunity to keep the works of foreign artists, who had an opportunity to get to know Korean Art better at the same time. However, it is sad that the symposium did not last after that.
 I should also state that within the country, a number of local self-governing bodies have actively built sculpture parks by opening symposiums. The last official thing I did at the Moran Museum of Art was registering the museum. An application was made to conform to the 'Museum and Art Gallery Promotion Act' enacted in 1992, but it was returned in that year. In 1993, the Moran Museum of Art was finally registered to the Ministry of Culture and Tourism as a private art gallery, and was put on a firm basis.
  The activities of the Moran Museum of Art can be classified into 4 stages in terms of period. First of all, the time from the establishment of the museum till the completion of the registration to the Ministry of Culture and Tourism can be defined as a forthcoming period of the Moran Museum of Art. Second, after that, the time in which the museum had been prepared to energetically present exhibitions with the Moran Gallery attached to the museum as the central figure is classified as a groping period. And the time in which extensive activities had been carried out throughout Seoul and Kyeongki-do with the Moran gallery as a stronghold can be called a period of consistent growth. Last of all, the time in which a constant committment to making exhibitions and its business solid with the museum as the central figure can be defined as a period of maturity. From this point of view, it is reasonable to think that the strong foothold of the museum was gained in about 1996 in which the Moran Gallery was founded and the Moran Art Award was established. Especially, the 'Korean Sculpture Today' exhibition, which began in 1996 and has been held annually, is regarded as an significant exhibition that allows us to look into the history of korean sculpture and that clearly delivers the character of the Moran Museum of Art as an art gallery dedicated to sculpture.

Evaluation on the ¡®Korean Sculpture Today' Exhibition

The Moran Museum of Art opened an auxiliary gallery named 'Moran Art Gallery' in Insa-dong Seoul, 1996 to overcome the geographical disadvantage of being apart from Seoul. And it presented its first exhibition 'Korean Sculpture Today; Form in Contemporary Korean Sculpture'. The exhibition, which has been held every year since 1996, is significant, as it has reevaluated the history of contemporary Korean sculpture. KIM Chan-shik, CHOI Eui-Soon, CHOI Man-lin, UM Tai-jeong, PARK Suk-won, SHIN Ok-joo, KIM You-sun, RYU In, PARK Hi-sun and WON In-jong were invited to present their works at the exhibition. I would like to evaluate the exhibition as one that defined the right direction in which the following exhibitions proceed, as it accepted abstract sculptures, which were left out while I was working as a curator, and showed an intention to look into the history of Korean sculpture from a new perspective.
  After the first exhibition, an exhibition commissioner was appointed each year, and it began to attract the attention of the art world by presenting exhibitions set on a critical view. The second 'Sculpture Now; The Depth of Thought' exhibition was presented with KIM Yong-dae as a commissioner, and featured sculptors such as PARK Jong-bae, UM Tai-junng, PARK Suk-won, CHOI In-soo, AHN Kyu-chul and LEE Soo-hong. The 'Sculpture Now 98; Material and the Touch of Artist ' and 'Sculpture Now 99; Line' exhibition, which planned by KIM Jung-hee who acted as a commissioner from 1998 to 1999, attempted to deliver the themes of each exhibition clearly and directly by setting the formative elements of sculpture as the specific themes of each exhibition and including them in exhibition title. SHIM Moon-seup, CHOI In-soo, YI Gee-chil and KIM Joo-hyun presented their works on the theme of 'Trace of Substance' in 1998, and Kim Sae-Il, Jeong Jae-Cheol, Seo Jeong-Gook, Shin Oak-Ju and Hong Seong-Nam were invited and presented their works on the theme of 'Line' in 1999.

The 'Sculpture Now 2000; Finding a New Dimension' exhibition, which was held after temporarily closing down the Moran Gallery and putting the focus on the Moran Museum of Art in Maseok, revealed an intention to accept diversity in sculpture, whereas the previous 2 exhibitions aimed to look into the formal characteristics of sculpture. The exhibition in which LEE Yong-deok, KIM Soo-ja, CHOI Jae-eun, PARK Sang-sook, Moon Joo and CHUNG Hyun who work with different tastes and methods participated is different from the previous exhibitions in that it focused particularly on the most up-to-date trends in sculpture while the previous ones put stress on contemporary sculpture. After this exhibition, 'Sculpture Now' turned around to reevaluate the history of modern and contemporary Korean sculpture, and has now held solo and group exhibitions side by side. The first exhibition under the new approach was the 'Sculpture Now; Visions of Four Sculptors ' exhibition held in 2001, which KIM Se-choong, KIM Chung-sook, PAIK Moon-ki and YOUN Young-ja were invited to present their works. They are the first Hangul(Korean Language) generation, studied sculpture after the restoration of independence. For this exhibition, the bereaved families of KIM Chung-sook and KIM Se-choong provided valuable reference materials in the history of contemporary Korean sculpture, which let the exhibition become significant as a historical exhibition. As it was the first exhibition that attempted to reevaluate contemporary Korean sculpture since the 'Viewpoint for Modernism; Plastic Arts' exhibition held by the National Museum of Contemporary Art, it was an important milestone for the identity of the Moran Museum of Art. In the purport of the historical evaluation and consideration on contemporary sculpture, the Moran Museum of Art presented the solo exhibition of CHOI Eui-soon and the posthumous exhibition of SONG Young-Su in 2002 and 2003 respectively. In 2004, KANG Tai-sung and CHOI Byeong-sang were invited to the ' Sculpture Now ; The Methodology of Formative Study ' exhibition.

In addition, the Moran Museum of Art has carried out the international art exchange program - <Moran International Sculpture Symposium> held in 1992, <Papua New Guinian Tribe Exhibition> held in celebration of the renovation of the museum in 1998 and <Across the Circle Exhibition> in which European and Korean sculptors participated on the theme of circle. The most memorable event, however, was the 'Contemporary Mongol Art; The Epic of Nomads' exhibition held from October 12 to November 10 2002, sponsored by Namyangju City. Although Mongol art was introduced from time to time after our country established diplomatic relations with Mongol, there had never been any exhibition that is systematic and large-scaled like it. The exhibition helped understand the true nature of and streams in contemporary Mongol art.
To ensure the successful exhibition that clearly shows streams in contemporary Mongol art, Namyangju City and the Moran Museum of Art sent a curator to Mongolia, who collected materials and information on contemporary Mongol art and consulted with artists on invitation and exhibition procedures in person. And the Moran Museum of Art recently presented the 'Nirvana, at the Boundary between Life and Death' exhibition to seek possibilities in contemporary Buddhist art by entrusting an external art critic with exhibition planning. There are also other exhibitions planned and presented by the museum, and they are as follows; 'Chuncheon Artists Invitation Exhibition' (1990) presented to promote local art, 'Aspect' exhibition (1994) featuring artists from Chungcheongbuk-do, 'Gangwon Contemporary Artists Exhibition' (1994), 'Mulgoul Artists Invitation Exhibition' (1996), 'Painting and Sculpture in the Northen Part of Gyeonggi-do; Golden Wing' exhibition (2002) planned by the Moran museum of Art and held at the second government building of Gyeonggi-do in Euijeongbu, etc

The most memorable solo exhibitions presented by the Moran Museum of Art are the exhibition of PARK Hi-sun (19914), JEON Jun (1996), JEONG Hyun (2000), LEE Yong-deok (2000) and CHOI Tae-hoon (2000). A year after PARK Hi-sun passed away (1997), her posthumous exhibition was held at the Moran Gallery in Insa-dong under the sponsorship of the Woosung KIM Jong-young Memorial Foundation. A memorial exhibition for the 5th anniversary of RYU In's death, who had close relations with the museum since the opening was also presented by the Moran Gallery in 2004.


Nurturing of Young Sculptors and Support for Creative Work

A program, which the Moran Museum of Art has carried out as seriously as planning and presenting exhibitions is selecting and supporting talented artists. The Moran museum of Art established the 'Moran Art Award' to help talented artists continue to contribute to the progress of Korean art by selecting and awarding artists, who have faced the reality of contemporary korean art and proved outstanding creativity through their works of art.

The award winning artist in the first year was KIM Whang-lock.
This award program that selects one to be awarded among artists under 40, who were nominated by 9 nominators, was regarded as one of the most significant art awards in Korea, together with the 'Gongsan Art Festival' held by the Dong-A Gallery, which discovered and supported experimental artists. Since the Moran Museum of Art invited the artist who won the grand award in the first year to present his works at the 2nd Moran Art Award Exhibition held at the Moran Museum of Art in the next year and, at the same time, presented the Award Winning Artists Exhibition held at the Moran Gallery in Seoul, it set a precedent for 'incredible support for creative work'.


In 1997, the Moran Art Award was replaced by the 'Moran Sculpture Grand-Prix' held once every 2 years, and a new system in which artists are no longer nominated but apply for public subscription was introduced. According to the enforcement regulations of the Moran Sculpture Grand-Prix, applicants must be under 40 ye-ars of age and have solo exhibition more than once. After document examination, the works of selected contestants are exhibited and finally artists are selected to be awarded. Among 21 artists who applied under the new system, the grand award went to YI Gee-chil and the second place award was given to KIM Seong-young and HAN Sang-up. The special award went to PARK Ji-hyun, LEE Dong-yong and CHOI Ok-young.
 At the 2nd Moran Sculpture Grand-Prix ceremony held in 1999, KIM Tae-gon was honored with the grand award.  This award has made a large contribution to the progress of Korean sculpture just like the 'KIM Jong-young Sculpture Award' given to young sculptors under 40 years of age by the 'Woosung KIM Jong-young Memorial Foundation' and the 'KIM Se-choong Youth Sculpture Award' established by the 'KIM Se-choong Memorial Foundation' to nurture young sculptors. As the award winning sculptors in previous years have risen into prominence by continually producing outstanding works, the Moran Sculpture Grand-Prix has been considered worth challenging.

Education, Research, Publication

Among art gallery's activities for the public interests, education and academic research can not be left out. From this perspective, The activities carried out by the Moran Museum of Art should be considered as a good precedent, considering it is just small-scaled private museum. One of the education programs that the Moran Museum of art has actively carried out is 'Moran Art Gallery School' designed for junior high school and high school students. The education program, which began in 1993, provides an opportunity for the growing generation to appreciate art works in person and helps them to become familiar with contemporary art by inviting talented active artists as speakers.

Academic research is a program in which the Moran Museum of Art has been interest since the opening. While preparing for the Primitivism exhibition, the museum presented theses on the subject of 'Korean Art and Primitivism' in the seminar room of the Dong-A Gallery Seoul on December 12, 1994, and they were 'The Origin of Primitive Art and Its Characteristics' (KIM In-whan / Professor at Chosun University), 'Primitivism in Korean Art and Its Reproduction' (PARK Yong-sook / Professor at Dongduk Women's University) and 'Indigenous Customs and Primitivism Korean Art' (CHOI Tae-man / Researcher at the National Contemporary Art Museum). The attempt to get the propriety of the exhibition verified was the right approach. The year 2001 in which the Moran Museum of Art tried to set a new direction for the 'Sculpture Now' exhibition with the 'Visions of Four Sculptors' exhibition was also the 100th anniversary of KIM Bok-jin's birth, who is regarded as the pioneer of modern sculpture.

The Moran Museum of Art hosted an academic seminar on the subject of 'KIM Bok-jin and Other Artists in Those Days' in celebration of the 100th anniversary of his birth in cooperation with other researchers. In the seminar, theses were presented, and they are as follows; 'Study on Modern and Contemporary Academism Sculpture' (CHO Eun-jung / Joint Professor, Han Nam University), 'Ji Jae Bul Hoo, the Art and Idea of Woosung Kim Jong-Young' (CHOI Tae-man / Professor at Seoul National University of Technology), 'Traditionality and Materialism of YUN Hyo-jung or Success and Failure' (YUN Beom-mo / Professor at Kyeong Won University) and 'Artists in Plastic Arts who chose the North Korea' (CHOI Yeol / Art Critic, Chief of Planning Department, GANA Art Center). The seminar which was designed to verify the artistic merits and demerits of sculptors who lived in the same period is valuable, as it tried to critically look into modern Korean sculpture. Apart from that, the Moran Museum of Art has continually made effort to explore and present the meaning and significance of exhibitions by hosting seminars for every major exhibition as complementary events.

The most important publication of art museums is catalogue that contains and delivers quality information. From this point of view, the catalogues, which the Moran Museum of Art has published, are a great source that help understand the current and previous trends in Korean sculpture. Apart from catalogues that are released as exhibitions open, the Moran Art Series has been regarded as an significant information source that is essential for studies on Korean sculpture. The Moran Art Series volume 1 ¡ºArt World of KIM Bok-jin, the Pioneer of Contemporary Korean Sculpture¡» was released in 2001, and the volume 2 titled ¡ºSoul in Rough Steel - SONG Young-Su, the Pioneer of Steel Sculpture¡»was published on the opening of the 'Sculpture Now; SONG Young-soo' exhibition in 2003. And the third volume¡ºStudy on the History of Contemporary Korean Sculpture¡»is now on the way.