Following Back to the Future: The Cheonggye Stream Restoration

Hong Kal, Associate Professor Department of Visual Arts,York University

RSVP required by 5PM November 16

The speaker says that restoration of Cheonggye stream in downtown Seoul is arguably the most prestigious and controversial construction project in Korea today. Since its reopening in 2005 after having been buried for half a century, the stream site has become an important leisure place for the urban populace. It has also become an icon of greener Seoul in it’s quest for a global city status. In the meantime, the stream project also actively mobilized the discourses of national identity restoration, heritage and "people."  This talk is about the ideology and the representation of Cheonggye stream. It will focus on how the stream project seeks to revive a sense of the shared past as a galvanizing force in what is after all divisive transformations in the new urban economy of contemporary Korea. The speaker aims to show how the stream restoration represents an important shift in the mode of governing the urban population.

Dr. Hong Kal is Associate Professor of Art History at the department of Visual Arts, York University.  Her research explores the politics of a visual spectacle in twentieth-century Korea.  She is the author of Aesthetic Constructions of Korean Nationalism (Routledge, forthcoming).

Friday, November 19, 2010 | 12:00 pm — 1:15 pm
Philippines Conference Room, Encina Hall, 3rd Floor