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The glow of glassSimply admire the glass art or make your own at Jeju Glass Museum, a magically innovative park
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승인 2014.07.31  09:23:04
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▲ Jeju Glass Museum at night. Photo by Eric Hevesy

This is an advertorial for Jeju Glass Museum.

All images are from Eric Hevesy. To see more of his work visit "Eric Hevesy Photography" on Facebook. - Ed.

Jeju Island may be known for its abundance of wind, rocks, and women, but these days perhaps museums should be added to the list. One of the most unique is Mr. Zung Moon Guhn’s Jeju Glass Museum, where you can learn about glass art, glassware, and even tour the fairytale-like glass-themed park.

Located just off the 1136 road toward Seogwipo, Moon and his wife opened the Jeju Glass Museum in 2008 as a child project of the Gimpo Glass Museum. Its 20,000 square meters include not only the Glass Park, but also a glass art studio, a lecture and exhibition hall, a gift shop, and the Café Glass Garden. It’s open 9 a.m. - 10 p.m., but I recommend going at dusk to see the glasswork colorfully illuminated.

▲ Training children in glassware at Jeju Glass Museum. Photo by Eric Hevesy

▲ Learning the art of glassware at Jeju Glass Museum. Photo by Eric Hevesy

▲ Training children in glassware at Jeju Glass Museum. Photo by Eric Hevesy

It was my first visit to the museum and Moon was kind enough to show me around the facilities and briefly educate me about glass art. I immediately felt welcome as the artist led me down to the studio while introducing himself in well-spoken English, which he honed living and working in London for 20 years.

Inside the large open-air studio, Moon showed me the furnace and the kilns needed to cool and set the glass. He also showed me a glass vase, a candle, and a plate, all of which visitors can make themselves. Witnessing these hands-on creations in action was certainly one of the highlights of my visit.

Then, I met a boy who was painting a flower on a flat, square piece of glass. Moon explained that this would become a plate and the paint would become indelible overnight in the kiln. Next, I watched as a young woman and her mother designed the insides of a candle which would later be set with wax.

▲ Some of the glassware on display at Jeju Glass Museum. Photo by Eric Hevesy

▲ Some of the glassware on display at Jeju Glass Museum. Photo by Eric Hevesy

I then walked over to the furnace as visitors attempted to blow a glass balloon with one of the museum’s experienced assistants. Moon’s encouragement and enthusiasm was reflected in the smiles of the young glass-blowers and observers alike. Finally, I was amazed at how easily a boy was able to blow a simple bubble of glass into a twirling, perfectly shaped flower vase.

As the crowds dispersed and the evening light dimmed, I knew the conditions were right to find the perfect photograph along the winding path leading to the Exhibition Hall, lined with various glass sculptures and installation works.

▲ Jeju Glass Museum at night. Photo by Eric Hevesy

▲ Jeju Glass Museum at night. Photo by Eric Hevesy

Inside the hall itself I saw delicate, colorful glass insects and flowers, and admired the intricacy of glass “bibimbap,” a Korean dish of mixed vegetables and rice. I made my way past a glass fountain, a glass maze, a glass stairway to heaven, and a rock and glass sculpture that would not be amiss beyond the Wall in Game of Thrones.

The fresh outdoor air was refreshing as I found a photogenic scene near the Lourve-esque glass pyramid structure, which was surrounded by colorful candy cane flowers. When the sky turned blue-black and the park was finally illuminated, the beauty of the park really shone. Words couldn’t do it justice, so please check it out for yourself.

▲ Jeju Glass Museum at night. Photo by Eric Hevesy

▲ Jeju Glass Museum at night. Photo by Eric Hevesy

As I left around 9 p.m., Moon was conscientiously directing visitors in and out of the parking lot and I asked what makes glass so special for him. He said he enjoyed working with a material that was small, but could become so monumental, adding that glass designers and artists were rare, making his art all the more special.

Moon then told me of his future plans to open a small exhibit showcasing the ancient glass which he has been collecting for many years. He claimed some pieces from his collection are from Mesopotamia, circa 1500 BC, with rival pieces one could only find in the British Museum. I’ll surely go back to check that out.

Jeju Glass Museum
Hours: Low-season hours (Oct ~ March): 9 a.m.-9 p.m. (Last admission at 8 p.m.)High-season hours (Apr ~ Sept): 9 a.m.-10 p.m. (Last admission at 9 p.m.)
Tickets: Adults 9,000 won / M and HS students 8,000 won
Where: 1403, Jungsanganseo-ro, Seogwipo-si
Transport: Jeju Intercity Bus Terminal → #750 (toward Seogwipo) → Sumbinari [40mins] → Walk to Jeju Glass Museum [25 mins]
Contact: 064-792-6262
Web: glassmuseum.co.kr

The museum really comes alive at night with the amazing lighting, while you can also receive free lessons inside in glassware. Photos by Eric Hevesy

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