Museum SAN – A Special Place in Korea Providing a Respite for Corona Virus Blues

WONJU, South Korea, Aug. 17, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — At the end of the July, the national culture & arts facilities including National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (MMCA) began to resume their operations. The series of efforts that aim to reenergize the culture & arts community include the requirement of face masks and having visitors 1 to 2m apart from one another, and the limitation of audience designed to keep too many viewers in closed indoor spaces. Nonetheless, the protracted Covid-19 pandemic is spreading the Corona Virus Blues. People may want to try to heal their body and soul, casting off endless anxiety and stress, using the natural environment and meditation. Museum SAN has a special space for art designed to effect psychological recovery.

Meditation — Regaining the Power to Get by

What people need now is the space and time to recover. The first thing that Museum SAN emphasizes is balance. It is about retrieving the precious values of daily life that have long been forgotten and taking enough rest needed for a tired body and soul through slow thinking. It is also recommendable to visit the Mediation Hall to have more intimate and wholesome psychological rest. The independent Meditation Hall, which is located inside the museum, is a meditation space that was designed by architect Tadao Ando, marking the 5th anniversary of its grand opening. With its design inspired by the ancient tombs of the Silla period, it is shaped like a dome with an area of 132m2, and natural light coming through the arched skylight that runs through the semicircular center renders different scenes from hour to hour. Meditation Hall offers permanent programs such as meditation with the sounds of nature, meditation for relaxation through breathing and simple body movements, silent meditation involved in listening to the Singing Ball performance, and voice healing meditation in which participants give their voices and listen to them. The museum also has a special program which goes a bit deeper with different topics for different seasons by well-known local and international meditation coaches. In June, the museum presented Breaking from Powerlessness to Recover Mental Energy and With Love of Oneself – Mindfulness with the topic of ‘Overcoming the Corona Virus Blues’. In September, a live performance event of traditional Korean musical instruments will be held to convey consolation and hope to visitors.

A Space for Arts That Blends in with Nature

Museum SAN is located in Gangwon Province, which serves as a much favored resort destination for Koreans with well-preserved natural environment. SAN at once refers to the location of the museum which lies on the top of a 275m-high mountain and is an acronym that combines the three words of space, art and nature. The building that conforms to the unique natural land form and registers harmony with the surroundings was designed by Tadao Ando. Museum SAN is a venue for displaying works of art and appreciating the varicolored nature. As its forte lies in art embraced in nature, Museum SAN has its gardens specific to concepts (flowers, water, and stone) stretched as a linear route that is about 2.5km on a site that is a bit larger than 66,000m2, centering on the main hall that houses Paper Gallery and Art Gallery Hall. With its different areas not clashing with one another but mingling to achieve fabulous harmony, the whole makes a large garden and work of art. Viewers enjoy new inspirations and a little leisure as they pass through those small sections. The Museum SAN is already well known for holding the largest James Turrell collection in Asia comprising six site-specific works, including "Skyspace." The value that is sought by Museum SAN lies in recovering the lost relaxation and recreation through harmony with nature.

Museums in our life now perform other functions as well as a place where people come and appreciate works of art. Why don’t you take a slow-step walk and enjoy a deep rest as suggested by Museum SAN, a space for nature and art? It’s about fine-turning the balance in life lost in the aftermath of Covid-19 and slowly recovering our daily life. That way, we can try to regain the power to live our life.

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The light that comes through the slit windows makes the soft shadows in the space of Meditation Hall.
The light that comes through the slit windows makes the soft shadows in the space of Meditation Hall.


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