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Goryeo's royal ceramics on display at National Museum

The National Museum of Korea has brought a collection of royal ceramics from the Goryeo Dynasty (918 – 1392) together. The ceramics are rare cultural relics that have been unearthed from royal tombs of the dynasty. The exhibition titled "The Royal Ceramics of the Goryeo Dynasty" opened at the National Museum’s Fine Arts Gallery II on Dec. 2 (Tuesday). It will last 76 days until Feb. 15, 2009 (Sunday).

About 290 highly valuable Goryeo celadon porcelain pieces, including four national treasures such as "Melon-Shaped Bottle" (National Treasure No. 94), are on display. This exhibition will provide you with a rare chance to relish the beauty and the excellence in the arts of Goryeo.

The exhibition will especially feature all finds excavated from Jangreung, the tomb of Injong, the 17th king of Goryeo. These relics have never been shown to the public before. The archeological finds from this royal tomb are precious materials for research into the kingdom’s society and culture, as well as its ceramics, in the 12th century. Moreover, many other royal celadon porcelain pieces of Goryeo dating back to the 12th century and the early 13th century are also on display.

Other royal ceramics were unearthed from the tombs of the 19th king Myeongjong, of the 21st king Huijong, of Queen Wondeok, the wife of the 22nd king Gangjong, and of Queen Sun-gyeong, the wife of the 24th king Wonjong. These precious ceramics carry significance as historic relics and show what kinds of ceramics the royal household of the Goryeo Dynasty used.

In addition, you can learn about how Goryeo celadon porcelain pieces were made, considering that the exhibition presents ceramics restored from broken shards found at old kiln sites in Sadang-li, Gangjin in Jeollanam-do (South Jeolla Province) and Yucheon-li, Buan in Jeollabuk-do (North Jeolla Province). Most ceramics for Goryeo royal household were made at these two kilns.

The Goryeo royal household preferred celadon porcelain pieces with solemn beauty that were made with highly developed techniques. This exhibition provides visitors with a chance to get a glimpse of what high taste the Goryeo royal household had.

During the exhibition, visitors can have a chance to speak with curators to have a better understanding of the Goryeo royal ceramics. The dialogue will be held at Ceramic Exhibition Room of Fine Arts Gallery II, National Museum at 7:30-8 p.m., on Dec. 17 (Wednesday), 2008.

☆Admission hours:
1) Tuesday, Thursday and Friday: 9 a.m.-6 p.m.
2) Wednesday and Saturday: 9 a.m.-9 p.m.
3) Sunday and Holiday: 9 a.m.-7 p.m.

☆Admission tickets:
1) Until Dec. 31, 2008: Free
2) From Jan. 1, 2009:
- children, elementary and secondary school students - Free
- college students and adults - 2,000 won

Address: 135 Seobinggo-ro, Yongsan-gu, Seoul (zip code: 140-026)
Telephone for general information: 02-2077-9000

How to Get There:
Get off at Ichon Station on Subway Line No. 4 (Blue Line) or Jungang Railway Line (Deokso-Yongsan) and come out exit No. 2. Walk 150m in the direction of Yongsan Family Park.

For more information, call 02-2077-9499 (curator Kang Kyung-nam in the Fine Arts Department of the Curatorial Affairs Office) or go to Korean or English website.

By Chung Myung-je Chief Staff Writer

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