Monday, March 7, 2011

Kim Nam-Joo, the Queen of Reversals, Throws Herself into ‘Concept Korea’ with Enthusiasm

Article picked from

Kim Nam-Joo, Throws Herself into ‘Concept Korea' with Enthusiasm Know Korea / Know Korea

2011/02/28 16:20


The third Concept Korea will be held at the David Rubenstein Atrium, Lincoln Center, New York on the coming 15th (local time). The event takes place during the New York Fashion Week season featuring four groups of designers from Korea sponsored by the Korean government to represent the exceptional fashions of Korea. As an upgraded version of the past two Concept Koreas, this time a wide range of additional events supporting promotion will be offered.

New York Fashion Week is one of the four major international fashion collections leading the world fashion industry. It is more a commercial-oriented fashion show, featuring merchandisable fashion to lead the market than boldly experimenting with trends. This year the week runs from February 10th to 17th at the Lincoln Center; and ‘CONCEPT KOREA, Cultural Treasures 2011’ brings the fashion designs of Korea to the international stage, where all leading figures of the fashion market gather to enjoy the season. The project, accompanying various promotional marketing activities, is sponsored by the Republic of Korean Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism (MCST), Daegu Metropolitan City, the Korea Creative Content Agency (KOCCA), and the Korean Research Institute for Fashion Industry (KRIFI) to advance the Korean fashion industry into the world market.

(photo: Naver blog)

When such efforts can successfully support Korean designers to create global brands joining the international fashion market with other world-renowned labels, the national competitiveness of Korea can be enhanced while acknowledged for its original fashion trends. Promotion is necessary for those talented designers to join the market; however it is difficult for many full-time designers to put much effort into marketing and promotion. Thus with support from government and private sectors, the Korean fashion can move a step closer to win more opportunities introducing its original trend of fashion to the world.

Indigo blue spreads into New York

Lie Sang Bong, and DO HO (from left to right)>

This year’s theme for Concept Korea is ‘Cultural Treasures,’ planning to feature designs inspired by traditional Korean cultures by four designer groups, DO HO, Lie Snag Bong, Steve J & Yoni P and Choi Bum Suk. The profound and mysterious indigo blue of the celadon porcelain will be transferred to the garments and the showroom portraying the graceful sensibilities of Korea. The indigo of the celadon may enchant the eyes of the West with its elegant and sophisticated beauty from the East, Korea.

The designers have prepared about forty pieces of work for the collection and the Concept Korea staffs prepared additional events to better promote Korean culture. This was planned from feedbacks on the past two Concept Koreas, which did not fully explore the resources and opportunities ending the event with a single show.

(photo: Naver blog)

After the forty-minute length fashion show, a list of interesting events with reception introducing Korean food, music, performance, and IT is held. Visitors can relax and get better understandings on Korea while enjoying fusion Korean food provided as part of the ‘Taste of Korea’ project led by the Korean Ministry of Food, Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries. An internationally recognized chef Tom Colicchio has prepared a special fusion Korean dish and makgeolli (Korean rice wine) for this occasion expected to attract more attention from the Western people.

Reaching out for new business opportunities

As the primary mission of the event is for the Korean fashion industry to enter the global market, a room showcasing the collections for potential business partners was arranged. In Chelsea Meatpacking district a public showroom was set up for ten days starting from February 14th to 23rd. Here the four designer groups from Korea shows each fifty pieces of their design welcoming foreign buyers. Especially, bringing Korea’s IT technology to the space, the showroom is ready to surprise the visitors and buyers from the entrance spot winning local attention among other designers participating the New York Fashion Week.

National and international promotion is a significant key to win success paying back the long efforts put into. Kim Nam-Joo, the Korean fashion icon celebrity was commissioned as honorary ambassador for Concept Korea Ⅲ and fashion magazines including Vogue, Elle, Harper’s Bazaar and influential American presses such as CNN, New York Times, New York Daily News will report the third Concept Korea stage.

Smart Phone applications providing information on Concept Korea Ⅲ will be distributed and SNS marketing will be actively developed. Twitter and Facebook contents (serviced in English) and appointed fashion reporters will introduce the New York fashion week agenda, events and selected designers followed by additional services. Thanks to such supports you would be well informed about the show without a need to fly to New York.

Let’s hope the fashion show to end as a great success promoting talented Korean designers on world stage and further work as a stepping stone for the Korean fashion industry advancing into the international market.

We sell Korean ‘Jeong’ (정) to the world

Article picked from

We sell Korean ‘Jeong’ (정) to the world Know Korea / Know Korea

2011/02/28 15:55


Korean corporations, which have been key players in the Korean economy, are now taking a prominent role in nongovernmental diplomacy. The works vary from eradication of poverty and hunger to establishment of schools and libraries. These projects are not the one-off event, but very substantial and specific aid since they involve the interaction with local people and keep providing them with services, which are urgent. Here are some aspects of ‘Affectionate Korea’ in the world.

‘Springtime of my hometown’, a Korean children’s song echoed in Indonesia

A familiar song is heard from Elementary School Menteng in Jakarta, Indonesia. Indonesian students sing a Korean children’s song ‘Springtime of my hometown’ to the piano accompaniment. It sounds strange to hear a song sung in Korean at a local school of Indonesia not at Korean schools.

(Photo: Korea Land Daily)

It is because Booyoung Co., Ltd., a construction company of Korea, donated 10,000 digital pianos and 30,000 blackboards to the ministry of education in Indonesia last month. Moreover, Korean ‘Graduation song’ (Lyrics: Yoon Suk-joong, Song: Jeong Soon-chul) is translated into Indonesian and saved in all of the digital piano for the Indonesian students since there is no song for graduation ceremony in some countries of the South East Asia. The song will be played during the graduation ceremony in this June.

In addition, there are popular Korean folksongs and children‘s songs contained in the digital piano. They are recorded in Korean, not in the local languages, and thus the students of Elementary School Menteng could learn not only the songs but also Korean, which contributes to making the music class more interesting.

Booyoung Co., Ltd. has established approximately 600 elementary schools in the South East Asia such as Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, East Timor, Malaysia and Sri Lanka so far and plans to expand the support into the Philippines, Myanmar, even Australia and New Zealand. Lee Joong-keun, the chairman of Booyoung said “we hope the donation of digital piano could encourage cultural exchanges and promote amity between Korean and Indonesia” and “we will strive to support the educational environment in addition to cultural exchanges so that students could keep pursuing their studies”, he added. The kind-hearted contribution of a company enables children to keep studying and dreaming.

1.5-ton truck conveying ‘Ghanaian children’s dream’

On 11th November 2010 the school of Oduponkpehe in Awutu Senya district, which is approximately 25 km away from Accra, the capital city of Ghana, was in a festive mood from the morning. It was the day when the inaugural ceremony of the children’s library and mobile library for children in rural areas was held.

The library of the school of Oduponkpehe renovated from the 82.5㎡ interior has about 3,500 books including children’s books, reference books for English, mathematics, and computer.

It is remodelled from a 1.5-ton truck>

In the urban areas of Ghana the standard of living is generally good and the accessibility to library is quite easy while in the rural areas the book distribution rate is very low due to the poor condition of road and transportation on top of a small number of libraries. The mobile library system is introduced to resolve this problem and the library of the school of Oduponkpehe will take a pivotal role in the system. The mobile library remodelled from a 1.5-ton truck will visit 24 schools in the rural areas including Koforidua and Kumasi as well as the capital city, Accra and provide service for 27,000 children from low-income families. Not only does it lend books but also organises various programmes such as book report contest.

Establishment of the children’s library and mobile library in Ghana is a part of the global contribution projects carried out by a Korean company, STX Corporation. STX Corporation is leading to cultivate talented international students through establishing libraries for children from multi-cultural families in Korea, and awarding a scholarship of 3 million Chinese yuan to honour students from 5 universities in 3 provinces of Northeast China. STX Corporation hopes to contribute to the long-term advancement of Korea by means of education.

Have you heard of ‘Lotte School’?

Lotte Department Store has transformed Son Ky middle school in the remote area of Vietnam after the 15-month renovation work. That is why the villagers call it ‘Lotte School’.

Hyundai Motor is promoting an environmental project, ‘Hyundai Green Zone’, which aims for reforestation of desert areas in China. The first target is Chakanor area within the Kunshantag desert in Inner Mongolia, China. The area is gradually losing pasture and turning into the salt desert due to desertification and strong alkaline soil. To prevent this process, Hyundai Motor plans to create a large scale of grassland by 2012, seeding indigenous plants that grow well on the alkaline soil.

Korean corporations would like to be a sincere friend to the world, delivering heart-warming ‘Jeong’ through their international Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) activities.