HomeAsian AmericansBoston's Museum of Fine Arts to debut "Hallyu! The Korean Wave"

Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts to debut “Hallyu! The Korean Wave”


The Museum of Fine Arts in Boston will be hosting the U.S debut of the exhibit Hallyu! The Korean Wave in March 2024. The exhibition is a collection of 200 works navigating how the cultural undertones of Korean technology, cinema, drama, music and fashion manifest within entertainment industries on a global scale.

The prominence of Korean culture has been coined as hallyu, a Chinese term translating to “Korean Wave.” The undercurrent of wonder and awe towards hallyu in Asia in the late 1990s allowed hallyu to swell up and crash onto westward coasts without regression.

The Hallyu! The Korean Wave was first displayed at London’s Victoria and Albert Museum (V&A). According to Forbes, it was proposed by the curator of the Korean collection at the V&A, Rosalie Kim. Kim noticed that the collection focused mostly on Korean art history and contemporary art but did not explore the influence of Korean pop culture.

Now, the exhibit is heading to Boston.

“We’re incredibly excited to bring this exhibition to Boston and to celebrate Korean pop culture, which brings inspiration and joy to millions around the world,” Christina Yu Yu, Matsutaro Shoriki Chair, Art of Asia told Art Dependence. “We’re looking forward to drawing connections between hallyu and our renowned collection of Korean art—and to exploring its impact on American audiences and the Korean American experience.”

According to Art Dependence, the exhibition features an interactive display challenging visitors to dance to the elaborate choreographies; a hallmark of K-Pop’s success.

In its collection of 200 objects significant to hallyu, the collection spotlights the iconic costuming of the Korean entertainment industry with costumes from Netflix’s Squid Game and K-Pop groups like BTS and aespa.

It also considers the innovative contributions of Korean designers like Münn, Darcygom, and Ji Won Choi to Korean fashion who have contrived their modern designs from traditional patterns and silhouettes of the hanbok—a traditional Korean garment.

The exhibition will also include the Museum’s renowned collection of Korean art. Its Arts of Korea Gallery is considered one of the finest collections outside of East Asia for its strong representation of Buddhist art and ceramics dating from the 8th century to the present, Art Dependence reports.

The opening night will take place on March 22nd at the Museum’s after-hours event. It will be on view in the MFA’s Ann and Graham Gund Gallery from March 24 to July 28, 2024.

After being on view at the MFA, the exhibition will be displayed at San Francisco’s Asian Art Museum.

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