If there is a thread that runs through a view of this volcanic island from the ground, sea, or air, it would be the black basalt stone walls (doldam, in Korean) that crisscross Jeju. It is this same sense of continuity -- and for Jeju islanders, a sense of home -- that pervades a photo exhibition by local photographers on now through Friday.
“Jeju Stone Walls” features 45 works by 16 local professional and amateur photographers of Jeju Yeongsang Dongin, which according to its Web site (jejuphoto.org) has since 2000 worked to record the beauty of Jeju’s environment and culture before it is lost.
Walking through the large exhibition room, one is welcomed by a wide array of subjects, compositions, and colors, though each features some configuration or other of the beautiful, ubiquitous black stone. The basalt walls are the real frames for these photographs.
While images of islanders and landmarks like Mt. Halla are conspicuously understated or absent from the collection, the blues of the sea and the sky, the yellow canola fields, and greens and browns of swaying eulalia glow with startling effect.
The orange vistas shot at dawn and dusk also capture the majesty of the environment in which island residents live. Some of the shots use techniques reminiscent of famous Jeju landscape photographer Kim Young Gap’s work.
This collection is on display until May 25 at Exhibition Room 1 of the Jeju Culture and Arts Center in Jeju City. Admission is free.
ⓒ Jeju Weekly 2009 (http://www.jejuweekly.com)
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