Summer in Seoul is upon us. Enjoy the weather before it gets too hot with our list of events and attractions. This month features a slew of blockbuster movies, world renown musicals, stunning art exhibits and of course Korea’s ever popular Boryeong Mud festival.


Art Exhibitions

Seoul Events - Jesper Just

MMCA Seoul | Jesper Just: This is a Landscape of Desire | Now – 8.3
Jesper Just broke into the art world with his distinctive yet subtle approach in addressing conventional notions of masculinity and stereotypical gender categorization. Moody, atmosphere narratives with open-ended story lines may confuse the viewer. However, his primary goal is to explore the intangibles behind human desire and emotions from the juxtaposition of subjects and their surroundings. It’s worth mentioning that the MMCA Gwacheon campus also has a design object exhibit going on that highlights how improved aesthetics in everyday objects can heighten enjoyment in their use!

Universal Studios Seoul - SeMa

SeMa Seosomun Main Building | Universal Studios Seoul | Now – 8.10
A collective of 13 artists from 10 different countries has been brought together by the Seoul Museum of Art. Their nomadic lives and works of art express a universal theme of contemporary nomadic life and change. From the exposure of different cultures, a divide appears between their existing foreign biases and what Korean culture has deemed as desirable on a myriad of topics such as romance and attraction. The audience is also able to view the abstract effects that a change of residence has upon artists and their work.

Iwo Jima Remembered

Hangaram Art Museum at the Seoul Arts Center | The Pulitzer Prize Photographs Exhibition | Now – 9.14
If you’re into documentary photography and photojournalism or you simply enjoy history, you definitely don’t want to miss this exhibition. Featuring prize winning photographs from 1942 – 2014, this exhibition will also include photographs never before revealed to the public. Iconic photographs taken during various historical moments such as the Korean War will be on display.

Edvard Munch

Hangaram Design Museum | Edvard Munch and the Modern Soul | 7.3 – 10.12
Considered a pioneer in the Expressionist movement of modern painting, Edvard Munch is best known for his work ‘The Scream’ which has permeated pop culture. His artwork is sure to strike a dark and somber tone, but in general this exhibition will showcase a wide spectrum of emotional intensity from love and passion to terror and depression.

Check out the Troika Collective’s Persistent Illusions exhibit (until 10.12) and Robert Douisneau’s In Love Moments exhibit (until 8.3) still ongoing! Descriptions of each exhibit were outlined in our May article. The above list outlines most of the notable exhibits going on from digital media art to photography and paintings. However, be sure to check out the main pages of the museums mentioned as they may have other special events going on more suited to your tastes. If you’d like to do a little research on Seoul’s best galleries and museums on your own, be sure to also peruse our past Seoul Events articles to find links to our places to get cultured.


Movie Releases

On the recovery from the major blockbuster-heavy month of June that saw X-Men: Days of Future Past, Edge of Tomorrow, & Transformers: Age of Extinction, July is taking a step back and offer a more refined month of both sequels and original story-telling.

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Bad Neighbours: July 3rd

Known as just “Neighbors” back in the States, Zac Efron makes his debut into the adult-comedy genre with the help of adult-comedy veteran Seth Rogen. Rogen plays Mac, the husband of a newlywed couple that moves into a house that is located right next-door to one of the most party hard fraternities in town. When Mac calls the cops to settle down one of their wild parties, it starts an on-going war of pranks between the two residences. The film is directed by Nicholas Stoller who was previously responsible for directing Forgetting Sarah Marshall.

Watch the latest trailer!

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Nymphomaniac: Vol II: July 3rd

Those who took the trip to the theaters to watch the sex-centered drama Nymphomaniac will be happy to know that they will be able to make the trip back to cinemas in Korea to see Nymphomaniac: Vol II. The sequel will continue the story of how Joe’s (Charlotte Gainsbourg) sexually dictated life developed and how she got into Selgigman’s (Stellan Skarsgard) care. This film is directed by Lars Von Trier, who at this point, needs no introduction.

Watch the trailer!
Featured Image Courtesy of TheDailyBeast

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The Signal: July 10th

While the name might imply a typical sci-fi movie, those who watch the trailer will be happy to find out it seems to be quite the opposite. The movie, from Focus Features, which has an outstanding track record for producing high story-driven features, is about a group of friends who go on a roadtrip only to be involved in accident that makes them both lose consciousness as well as wakeup in government custody. The film looks to have beautiful cinematography for a genre that has largely become FX dependent. The film stars Australian actor Brenton Thwaites (seen in last month’s Maleficent) as well as Laurence Fishburne. Be sure to check out the trailer below.

Watch the latest trailer!
Featured Image courtesy of Trailers.Apple

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Draft Day: July 10th

It’s been awhile since a sports movie centered around anything but baseball has come out it seems. Draft Day, which stars Kevin Costner, Jennifer Gardner, William Dafoe, and maybe or maybe not Chris Berman, focuses on the Cleveland Browns and their GM Sonny Weaver who is tasked with rebuilding his lackluster team. While ownership wants him to take the logical route for his picks, Weaver (Costner) decides to go against the popular thought, and make picks of his own. The film is directed by Ivan Reitman.

Watch the latest trailer!
Featured Image courtesy of IGN

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The Raid 2: Berandal: July 10th

Those who are familiar with 2011’s The Raid: Redemption will tell you that this Indonesian action thriller is one of the best original action movies of the last decade. Now with a sequel, director Gareth Evans is looking to continue the story with his critically acclaimed fusion of martial arts and gun action. In Berandal, Rama goes undercover with thugs of Jakarta to both bring down the syndicate and expose the corruption within his own police force.

Watch the latest trailer!
Featured Image courtesy of Electric-Shadows

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Dawn of the Planet of the Apes: July 17th

Those that have been to the movies recently have seen posters for this movie appearing everywhere. Continuing the story of Caesar and the apes clash with humans, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is the sequel to the origins story reboot Rise of the Planet of the Apes. In this sequel, the human race has been severely devastated an unknown disease that broke out after the first film, which during so brought a temporary peacetime between the humans and the growing intelligent-ape nation led by Caesar (Andy Serkis). However a small band of survivors begin to threaten the ape nation, which brings both sides to the brink of war.  Matt Reeves (Cloverfield) takes over the directing reigns from the previous film’s Rupert Wyatt. The film stars Andy Serkis, Gary Oldman, and Keri Russell.

Watch the latest trailer!

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How to Train Your Dragon II: July 24th

If you’re in the mood for something a little more lighthearted this month, How to Train Your Dragon II will be a good go-to movie. In this sequel to the incredible animated box office hit in 2010, Hiccup and Tooth discover an ice cave that is home to a hive of new wild dragons as well as a human dragon rider that is found out to have relations to Hiccup himself. The new discovery however begins to challenge the peace between dragons and the Vikings as a new force moves in and wants to conquer the other side. This film features an all-star cast with Jay Baruchel, Cate Blanchett, Gerard Butler, Jonah Hill, and Kristen Wiig.

Watch the latest trailer!

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Guardians of the Galaxy: July 31st

Comic-book fans can rejoice that the month of July will feature one of the most anticipated comic-book movies of the year. Guardians of the Galaxy starring Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Bradley Cooper, Vin Diesel, Nathan Fillion, John C Reilly, Benicio Del Toro, and a whole lot of other top actors, is the first story of a band of space mercenaries that find themselves in trouble with the law when their team leader Peter Quill aka Star-Lord steals a mysterious orb that is coveted by the villainous Ronan the Accuser who threatens the livelihood of the entire galaxy.  The film features an all-star cast and is directed by newcomer James Gunn.

Watch the latest trailer!


Festivals

buyeo lotus festivalBuyeo Sedong Lotus Festival (부여서동연꽃축제)

When: July 17, 2014 – July 20, 2014
Where: Seodong Park

The city of Buyeo holds an annual celebration of the lotus flowers that grow atop the lakes and ponds of Korea. If you are looking to visit a historical city and also partake in many breathtaking views this summer, this festival is for you.

boryeong mud festivalBoryeong Mud Festival (보령머드축제)

When:  July 17, 2014 – July 27, 2014
Where: Daecheon Beach, Boryeong City 

If you have not made plans yet, this is definitely something you may want to start planning now! The Boryeong Mud Festival is a great experience for all patrons! Getting a full body scrub with the mud, all while wrestling, sliding, and dancing in the muddy stuff. Bring your friends and enjoy your time there! While day trips are possible, booking a motel or pension is recommended! Read more and book a trip with our partners Good Times ROK at the Boryeong Mud Festival.

water-gun-festivalSinchon 2nd Annual Water gun Festival (물총놀이페스티벌)

When: July 26, 2014 – July 27, 2014
Where: Sinchon Station Exit 3, Seodaemun-Gu 

Last year Sinchon held their first annual water gun festival, which was a smash hit! Thousands came out to shoot each other down and cool off in the water! If you are looking to have some fun and escape that July humidity show up with your SuperSoakers and water balloons!

seoul animation and comic festivalThe 15th Seoul International Cartoon & Animation Festival (서울국제만화애니메이션페스티벌)

When: July 22, 2014 – July 27, 2014
Where: COEX, Gangnam

The Seoul International Cartoon and Animation Festival is one of the largest in the world. Each year it showcases animated film works by both renowned and budding artists. If you have an interest in animated film or comics, this is one festival that you will want to check out!


Musical Events

Psycho Psycho (link no longer active)

When: July 6th, 2014
Where: Rolling Hall Performance PlacePsycho Psycho

A rock festival that will be sure to turn to some heads. Check out Ludistelo, Romantiqua, Hellvision, Love X Stereo, Dead Flower Children and more and get your live music fix.

Hot Summer Rock Festival

When: July 20th, 2014
Where: Rolling Hall Performance PlacePrint

Beat the heat this summer at the Rolling Hall to the sounds of Transfixion, Harrybigbutton, Broken Valentine, Toxic, Gate Flowers, Ezen and more.

Darkside

When : July 25th, 2014
Where: Rolling Hall Performance Place 

DarkSide

Darkside, the critically acclaimed collaboration between electronic producer Nicolas Jaar and guitarist Dave Harrington, will be coming to Seoul July 23rd. The duo’s innovative sound almost defies categorization— Stereogum describes it as “dubbed-out jazzbo junkyard fuzz,” and the words “extraterrestrial,” “psychedelic,” “ruminative,” and even ”academic” are often thrown around as well. While standard house/techno music falls under the 120-130 bpm range, Darkside typically sticks to 100 bpm, bringing it down to even 70 bpm on occasions. Jaar, inspired by the idea that there is a “beautiful waltz to sadness,” seeks to create what he calls “rhythmic anguish” in his music—music that makes you want to dance and cry at the same time. Do yourself a huge favor and check out the first eleven minutes of Darkside’s debut album—headphones are a necessity. 

Dracula

When: July 17th – September 5th, 2014
Where: Seoul Art Center, Opera TheaterDracula

See the acclaimed musical based on Bram Stokers best selling novel. Dracula has been captivating viewers since 2004 when it premiered in San Diego. Don’t miss out on this opportunity while it’s in Seoul!

Cats The Musical

When: June 13th – August 24th, 2014
Where: BLUE SQUARE Samsung Electronics Hall160082318_aea9db0111_o

The worldwide phenomenon returns to Korea. See the musical that has become synonymous with great musical theater and entertainment.


Image Cred: Sircone | ImcomKorea | Nomadic Samuel | Yuriybrisk

If you have any suggestions on what to do in Korea please let us know below!