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Zurich gets taste of Korean art

Zurich's Rietberg Museum will be full of eastern promise this year, with an exhibition on Korean art. It is not only one of the most significant Korean art shows ever sent abroad, but also the first major presentation of Korean art in Switzerland.

This content was published on March 20, 2000 - 15:48

Zurich's Rietberg Museum will be full of eastern promise this year, with an exhibition on Korean art. It is not only one of the most significant Korean art shows ever sent abroad, but also the first major presentation of Korean art in Switzerland.

The exhibition brings together almost 200 outstanding Korean art works of which an impressive number are designated as national treasures. It is not only one of the most significant Korean art shows ever sent abroad, but also the first major presentation of Korean art in Switzerland.

All the exhibits are on loan from museums, temples, palaces and private collections in South Korea. They date from 600 BC to the 19th century and offer to the Western audience a comprehensive insight into a highly important and influential culture in the Far East.

The Rietberg Museum was founded in 1952, but appears much older as it is housed in the 200-year-old Villa Wesendonck, which was donated to the city of Zurich at that time.

Set on a lofty promontory amid rolling parkland the Rietberg attracted more than 70,000 visitors in 1999, which director Albert Lutz says was financially the museum's most successful year.

'We are the only museum of non-European art in Switzerland,' said Lutz, 'and this year's Korean exhibition is the most expensive we have had.'

The exhibition, which ends July 9, is part of a wider programme of Korean related events taking place in Zurich in spring and summer.

On June 24 and 25 an open air Korean festival will be held in the park surrounding the museum. Music and dance performances are scheduled along with workshops for children.

Also on offer over the next four months are Korean films, which will be screened at cinemas throughout Zurich, along with master classes and workshops held by Korean writers and artists.

By Tom O'Brien.

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