Featuring a mix of contemporary films, documentaries, and classics, this series showcases traditional and modern Korean culture with themes explored in the exhibition Treasures from Korea: Arts and Culture of the Joseon Dynasty, 1392-1910. 

(Treasures from Korea video)

Each film is introduced by Joe Kim, founder of the Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival. Discussions with experts in Korean film and history follow most screenings.

Philadelphia Museum of Art

Van Pelt Auditorium
A State of Mind | 1:00 - 4:00 PM
$8 (Free for museum members and students with valid ID)
(Please note that in order to visit the Treasures from Korea exhibition you will need to pay a separate museum admission fee)
Click to buy tickets (or call 215-235-7469)


(Image courtesy of Kino Lorber, Inc.  All rights reserved.)

A State of Mind profiles two North Korean schoolgirls and their families in the lead up to the 2003 Mass Games-the biggest and most elaborate human performance on earth-and in the process reveals more of North Korea than ever before. Filmmaker Daniel Gordon’s beautifully photographed documentary takes us deep into the culture of this isolated land.  This program begins with a conversation with director Daniel Gordon (“9.79*” - ESPN 30 For 30 series) followed by a screening of A State of Mind.

$8 ($5 museum members; free for students with valid ID)
(Please note you will need to pay a separate museum admission fee and Wednesdays after 5pm are “Pay What You Wish” and this includes the Treasures from Korea exhibition.  Call 215-763-8100 for more info)
The Wednesday Night film series is supported by the Dean and Zoë Pappas Family Foundation.
APRIL 2: Chi-hwa-seon (Painted Fire)
Click to buy tickets (or call 215-235-7469)

(Image courtesy of Kino Lorber, Inc.  All rights reserved.)

Chi-hwa-seon is a vivid portrait of the life of one of Korea’s greatest artists, renowned painter Jang Seung-eop. Celebrated filmmaker Im Kwon-Taek won the Cannes Film Festival Best Director prize for this film, which follows Jang’s struggles with his artistic identity during turbulent political revolutions in late-ninetenth-century Korea. The screening is followed by a conversation with Hyunsoo Woo, the Museum’s Maxine and Howard Lewis Associate Curator of Korean Art; and Eugene Y. Park, Korea Foundation Associate Professor of History and Director, James Joo-Jin Kim Program in Korean Studies, University of Pennsylvania.
(Includes strong sexual content and some gore)
APRIL 9: Sunny
Click to buy tickets (or call 215-235-7469)

(Image courtesy of CJ Entertainment.  All rights reserved.)

Sunny is a film about a middle-aged woman who tries to fulfill her friend’s dying wish of reuniting their group of high school friends. The film alternates between the present day where the women are middle-aged, and the 1980s when they were in high school. Featuring a soundtrack of 80s pop hits, this heartwarming film will alternately make you laugh and cry as these long-lost friends discover they can still change one another’s lives.
Feel free to come dressed in your 80’s best!

APRIL 16: Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter… and Spring
Click to buy tickets (or call 215-235-7469)

(Image courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics.  All rights reserved.)

From the brash actions of youth, through the dawn of adolescence, to the fullness of adulthood, one man’s life lessons are learned as seasons pass, his emotional inner life changing with the landscape around him. Award-winning Korean writer/director/editor Kim Ki-duk has crafted a lushly exotic, yet universal story about the human spirit and its evolution, from innocence to love, evil to enlightenment, and ultimately to rebirth. This screening is followed by a discussion with Aaron Mannino (multimedia artist, film programmer, writer), Donald Fredericksen (professor of film and Religious and Visual Studies at Cornell) and Rev. Sanghyeon Cheon (chair of Won Buddhist Studies program at the Won Institute).
APRIL 23: Planet B-Boy
Click to buy tickets (or call 215-235-7469)

(Image courtesy of Elephant Eye Films.  All rights reserved.)

Korean-American filmmaker Benson Lee (who grew up in Philadelphia) sought to answer the question of how South Korea became the epicenter of the global phenomenon known as breakdancing, which originated in the Bronx in the 1970s. Weaving between the vivid backdrops of Osaka, Paris, Las Vegas, and Seoul, unforgettable images frame the intimate stories of international teams of dancers who struggle to fulfill their dreams. This screening is followed by a filmmaker discussion with producer Amy Lo (who also produced “Battle of the Year”) and a live b-boy demonstration by Project Positive: http://instagram.com/projectpositive#!
APRIL 30: The Yellow Sea
Click to buy tickets (or call 215-235-7469)
(Image courtesy of 20th Century Fox.  All rights reserved.)
Desperate to pay off mounting debts, a Korean man living in China (a joseonjok) agrees to carry out an assassination in South Korea. But soon the man finds himself at the center of a dangerous conspiracy as he begins to uncover a vicious trap of betrayal and lies. Screened in the Un Certain Regard section at the 2011 Cannes Film Festival, The Yellow Sea is an impressive crime thriller from director Na Hong-jin (The Chaser).
(Includes graphic violence and sex)

Also, please check out:
Fri, March 28, 5-9:45pm: Art After 5 K-Pop Dance Party & Fashion Show (Free after museum admission)
Student designers from the fashion department of the Art Institute of Philadelphia kick off the evening by showcasing runway looks using professional models. This evening also features a K-pop (Korean pop) performance, a mini dance class, and a dance party in the museum DJ’d by Chops (produced for Kanye West, The Lonely Island and more)!

Korean Drama Series: Sungkyunkwan Scandal
Wednesdays 5:30-8:30pm (Mar 19, 26, May 7, 14, 21)
(Free after museum admission)
Sungkyunkwan Scandal (2010) is a South Korean drama about a girl who disguises herself as a boy while attending Sungkyunkwan, the Joseon Dynasty’s highest educational institute, where no women were allowed. Each screening features three episodes and is presented by Drama Fever, the largest online video site for the distribution of international televised content.

Trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Q5APLTp7k0 

To get tickets visit
philamuseum.org or call 215-235-SHOW (7469)
For questions and press inquiries please contact Joe Kim.

Special thanks to everyone at the museum and in particular the education and membership departments and everyone else who made this film series possible. Thanks also to our co-promotional partners:
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