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Austrian Painter`s Exhibition Drawing Crowds in Seoul

Posted March. 09, 2009 08:33,   


“I’ve always liked (Gustav) Klimt and I’ve earnestly waited for his exhibition. I waited and waited, and finally came to the exhibition on the 200th anniversary of meeting my boyfriend. I feel great that we have had good memories.”

This is what the 100,000th visitor to the “Golden Secret: Gustav Klimt in Korea 2009” said at Seoul Arts Center. Kim Tae–eun smiled upon receiving a bouquet from the event’s organizer.

The exhibition is showcasing the works of the Austrian symbolist painter who is best known for his golden paintings. The number of visitors has topped 100,000 35 days after the exhibition’s opening.

As the 100,000th visitor, Kim received an exhibition catalog, art poster and a T-shirt. A big fan of the Austrian artist who joined the Klimt Club three years ago, Kim said, “I’ll come again since it’s too good of an exhibition to visit only once.”

Fans have flocked to the arts center in droves, as word has spread that the Seoul event will be the last large-scale exhibition of the artist held outside Austria in the 21st century.

Lee Joon-ho, a team head at the center, said, “Despite the economic recession, homemakers are coming weekdays while couples and families are visiting weekends, saying they’ll have no other chance to see Klimt’s work.”

“A growing number of office workers are coming after work since the opening hours have been extended by an hour to 8 p.m. from this month.”

Yoon Yeong-hyeon, director at the event’s organizer Munhwa HD, said, “As expected, Klimt’s content is hugely popular,” adding, “It is a rare thing that most visitors to the Klimt exhibition are individuals, except for several groups of professionals such as lawyers and pharmacists.”

The elderly were also seen among visitors at the exhibition. Ji Man-son, 99, said, “I happened to hear about the exhibition and the paintings look great even to the eyes of a layman like me.”

Yoon Woon-joong, an exhibition critic for famous museums and art galleries in Paris, said, “I came here at the request of art fans in Seoul whom I met in Europe. This is the best chance to see Klimt without visiting Vienna.”

The exhibition continues through May 15. For further information, please visit the Web site, www.klimtkorea.co.kr, or call the information line at 02-334-4254.