Korean Cultural Centre UK to fund Korean curatorial post at British Museum

On 25 June 2014, the Korean Cultural Centre UK, supported by the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism of the Republic of Korea, and the British Museum will sign an agreement that establishes a new three-year post for a full-time Curator of Korean Collections at the Museum.

The agreement establishes a Curatorial Grant from the “Korean Art Gallery Aid Program for Overseas Museums” designed by the Korean Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism to support the invaluable overseas work of Museums with Korean galleries and collections. This three-year grant will allow the British Museum to recruit a full-time Korean specialist to curate the Korean collections and assist in shaping, planning, and delivering the Museum’s Korea-themed programmes in relation to the Korea Foundation Gallery. It is the first grant of this nature to be awarded.

His Excellency Ambassador Sungnam Lim and Neil MacGregor, Director of the British Museum, will exchange copies of the agreement at a ceremony scheduled for 25 June 2014. The British Museum plans to recruit a specialist curator by the end of 2014 whose academic work will solely focus upon the development of the Korean collections at the British Museum. The new curator will expand awareness of the Korean collections and the Korea Foundation Gallery through multiple media, including online and print publications, lectures, and gallery talks, as well as working with both Korean and UK institutions to generate new knowledge and forums for sharing research. This post will allow the British Museum to more fully advance interest in and understanding of Korean culture for the British public, Koreans in London and the international Museum audience. The post is an exciting new addition to the Museum that will ensure more research and greater exposure for Korea in the museum and public sectors. Jan Stuart, the Keeper of the Department of Asia, said, “The partnership between the Republic of Korea and the United Kingdom created by the support of the government of Korea provides a critical asset for the British Museum and an innovative paradigm for cultural organizations dedicated to enhancing cultural exchanges with other countries.”

If you would like to attend the signing ceremony for the agreement please contact the press office. The event will take place on 25 June at 14.00.

Korean Cultural Centre UK

Opened by the Korean Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism in January 2008 in London under the jurisdiction of the Embassy of the Republic of Korea, the Korean Cultural Centre UK has played a vital role in the enhancement of friendship, amity and understanding between Korea and the UK through cultural and educational activities. For example, the KCCUK operates Korean language and culture learning programmes, including the King Sejong Institute, as well as regular exhibitions covering diverse genres of arts. Furthermore, off-site the KCCUK presents large-scale cultural events such as the London Korean Film Festival, an annual event which attracts over 5,000 people every year. From its central London location the KCCUK continues to introduce Korean culture and arts to the UK while enhancing cultural exchange between both countries.

Notes to editors:

The Korea Foundation Gallery at the British Museum was established with funds from the Korea Foundation and opened in 2000. The gallery displays important examples of Korean art, archaeology and culture. The British Museum’s distinguished collection is supplemented by generous loans from the National Museum of Korea and the British Library, as well as having benefited from the patronage of private individuals. The objects on display cover all materials with particular strengths in ceramics, lacquerware, metalwork and paintings. The gallery features the reconstruction of a traditional sarangbang, or scholar’s study, which was built by contemporary Korean craftsmen. Works are under way to comprehensively refresh and update the gallery (to be concluded late 2014).

For further information and images please contact the British Museum’s Press Office on 020 7323 8394 / 8522 or communications@britishmuseum.org