Sunday, May 17, 2009

Handbag Exhibition to 30 May, Hwadong, Central Seoul

"Handbag, My Love" exhibits representative handbags from the 19th century.
More than 80 handbags from all over the world are displayed at the exhibition on the second floor of the World Jewellery Museum in Hwa-dong.
Lee Kang-won, the director of the museum, collected the exhibits herself over 30 years while traveling the globe with her diplomat husband.

The World Jewellery Museum presents its “Handbag, My Love” exhibition through May. The handbag could be called one of the most important fashion items establishing a trendy woman’s identity. A handbag reflects fashion trends and the personality of the person carrying it. Also, the inside of the handbag contains women’s secrets like a hidden palace.

The items in a handbag also show aspects of the times. Since the 18th century, women have carried money, cosmetics, keys, handkerchiefs, notes, pens and love letters in their purses. Changes in the shapes and uses of the handbag indicate changes in women’s social status as well as social developments.

The handbag we know today appeared in the 1880s. Like a close friend, a social necessity, and a luxurious accessory for a woman, the handbag reflects the spirit of the time, and the designs of the handbag are closely related to art trends ranging from the early 20th century’s art nouveau to the mid-20th century’s pop art.

The World Jewellery Museum has on display some 80 handbags from Europe, Asia, the Americas, Africa and the South Pacific, dating to periods ranging from the 1870s to the 1950s. This rarely seen handbag collection allows visitors an opportunity to discover the aesthetic, historical and cultural meanings of handbags as well as to gain a new sense of their significance as personal ornaments that share a long history with people, rather than just as icons of fashion.

The exhibition runs through May 30th at the World Jewellery Museum in Hwadong, central Seoul.

Tickets are 5,000 won for adults, 3,000 won for students and 2,000 won for children under seven-years old.
Hours: 11am - 5.30pm. The museum is closed on Mondays
Address: Seoul, Jongno-gu, Hwadong, 75-3 (in the central Seoul art gallery area near the National Folk Museum)

Public transport: Closest subway: Line 3 Gyeongbokgun station exit 5 , or Anguk station exit 1 (15 minute walk from either station. You should get a map to guide you. The World Jewellery Museum is not far from the Art Sonje Center).

For more information, call (02) 730-1610 or go through 02-1330 (Tourist information) for English information.

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