Whanki Museum
여행 정보 요약

Kyu-sung Woo / Republic of Korea

Esthetics of simplicity in harmony with the surroundings

Like the Museu Picasso and Musée Matisse, Whanki Museum was created in commemoration of a single artist. Whanki Kim (1913–1974) was a world famous artist who created a unique artistic world based on Korean lyricism. When his friend, architect Kyu-sung Woo, was asked to design a museum dedicated to Whanki Kim, Woo planned to create a building that would harmonize with the artist’s style and artwork. Under the concept of “stylish modernity added to traditional Korean architecture, which highlights harmony with natural elements such as mountains, the moon, clouds, rocks and trees,” Woo combined typical layout of traditional Korean architecture with modern design aspects to create a museum where visitors can see and feel the unique and distinct beauty of Korea.

The museum is comprised of the main building, Annex 1, Annex 2 and the inner court. Each building along with the outdoor spaces are laid out along the foot of Bukhansan Mountain, which is a layout often seen in traditional Korean temples.

The winding slope that follows the buildings offers charming views of the structures. In addition, the distant views of Inwangsan Mountain as seen from the slope add to the picturesque beauty.

Visitors can also experience the unique atmosphere inspired by traditional Korean architecture. Light coming through the glass tile walls and the Well of Light on the rooftop courtyard gently brighten the exhibition space, creating an atmosphere similar to a hanok (traditional Korean house), which lets in soft sunlight through the windows made of hanji (traditional Korean mulberry paper) and wooden frames.

If you walk out to the courtyard outside the  exhibition area, there is a traditional Korean garden. The Well of Light and the glass tile wall surrounding the inner court create a cozy traditional atmosphere that is even more beautiful and serene at night.

TIP : You can begin your tour at Gyeongbokgung Palace, then take a bus to Buam-dong, where the Museum is located, and visit Whanki Art Museum, the Yun Dong-ju LIterary House, and finally relax at a hanokstyle coffee shop or restaurant in the area.
Location : 63 Jahamun-ro 40-gil, Jongno-gu, Seoul
Telephone : 02-391-7701
How to go : Exit 3 of Gyeongbokgung Station, Subway Line 3 → Bus no. 7022, 1020 or 7212 and get off at Buam-dong Community Service Center → 5-min walk from bus stop
Operating hours : 10:00–18:00 (Closed on Mondays, Jan 1, and Seollal & Chuseok holidays)
Admission Fees : Varies by exhibition


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