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North Korean Art Gallery in Beijing


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If you live in Beijing, this looks like an interesting place to check out. Here's a bit from a New York Times article:

" Nicholas Bonner, a 43-year-old Briton, negotiated the Pyongyang government's approval for a gallery of the same name in downtown Beijing. It is the first outside North Korea to deal exclusively with the country's art, Mr. Bonner said, though some galleries in South Korea occasionally sell works from the North.

Mr. Bonner, who has traveled to North Korea since 1993, proposed working with the Pyongyang studio because, he said, its 40 artists included some of the country's better, older painters. With a Chinese partner and the approval of the North Korean government, he has brought more than 1,000 works here.

For Western critics, North Korean art may seem an oxymoron. Since the establishment of the Communist North in 1948, the country has been closed to the outside world and expression has been tightly controlled.

"The artists are stuck in a time warp and have not had access to modern Western art since before the 1950's," Jane Portal, a curator at the British Museum's Oriental antiquities department and author of the forthcoming "Art Under Control in North Korea," said in an e-mail interview. In June, the museum will exhibit contemporary North Korean paintings, prints, calligraphy and ceramics that she collected on recent trips. "


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