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Real DMZ Project is a contemporary art project based on the interdisciplinary research of the Korean Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) and its bordering areas. Having begun with a critical perspective on the ironies that surround the Demilitarized Zone, the project has extended its parameters by experimenting not only with new productions and exhibitions but also via dialogue and discussions within the field of the humanities and social sciences. In its first edition in 2012, the project was organized in the form of an exhibition held both in and out of the Civilian Control Zone in Cheorwon County. It has extended its parameters not only geographically to the Art Sonje Center in Seoul, and the establishment of a new artist residency in the former propaganda village of Yangji-ri but also by including talks, workshops, and lectures within the field of the humanities and social sciences. The long-term vision of Real DMZ Project is to create a platform that not only supports a variety of research methods and exhibition formats, but also ensures that the results are made accessible in open archive.
Real DMZ Project Committee:
Established in 2012, Real DMZ Project Committee is a host institution of Real DMZ Project. In order to enable Real DMZ Project to address political, social, and cultural issues on the Korean DMZ from multiple perspectives, the Committee concentrates on the operational tasks. Also, its current projects include exhibitions, forums, researches, and new productions, and it aims to develop a platform through which multi-disciplinary researches related to the DMZ can be shared. The Committee members are Youngbin Kwon (Chairman, Real DMZ Project/Former Chairman, Arts Council Korea), Kwi-Gon Kim (Representative of the Korea DMZ Council, Ex-Director of the Ecology Research Institute at SNU), Hyunkyung Kim (Director of the Institute of Unification Broadcasting at MBC), Suntag Noh (Photographer), Hyungmin Pai (Professor at University of Seoul School of Architecture), Jae-eun Jeong (Film Director), Keunsik Jung (Director, Institute for Peace and Unification Studies Seoul National University/ Professor, Department of Society, Seoul National University), Kyung-Jin Zoh (Professor, Landscape Design Theory / Open Space Planning / Public Space Design, Seoul National University), Sunjung Kim (Artistic Director of Real DMZ Project/Chief Director at the Gwangju Biennale), and Najung Kim (Head of Exhibition Team, Art Sonje Center).
Real DMZ Project: Tourism beyond the border
Real DMZ Project is a contemporary art project based on the interdisciplinary research of the Korean Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) and its bordering areas. The project attempts to develop the “real” meaning of the DMZ by reexamining its history and status through the critical perspectives of artists and scholars.
Tourism Beyond the Border explores various paradoxes of the DMZ. For one, although the DMZ has been situated in tension and conflict since the Cold War, it has also gradually transformed into a global tourist attraction, through programs such as the “security tour.”
The exhibition features five works that respectively portray a site of the security tour in Cheorwon County–the region that endured the most brutal battles during the Korean War. Attempting to shed light on the meaning of the DMZ, these works question our status as a tourist in such a complex and historic site.