The Korean art collection began with the donation of a group of Korean ceramics in 1966 by Bak Jeonghui, then president of the Republic of Korea, after a visit to the museum. The collection grew gradually until 2000, when the museum acquired over 200 works of art from an important collection in Los Angeles. Highlights include wonderful examples of objects from the Three Kingdoms, Goryeo, and Joseon periods, with an emphasis on Buddhist and literati painting, ceramics, lacquer, and sculpture.
Image: Seated Buddha, Korea, Goryeo dynasty, 10th–11th century, Cast iron, 25 1/4 × 20 × 18 in. (64.14 × 50.8 × 45.72 cm), Gift of the 2013 Collectors Committee (M.2013.44).
Artist Youngmin Lee discusses the history of bojagi in Korea.
Korean wrapping cloths (known as bojagi in Korean) are celebrated for both their form and function. As wrapping cloths, bojagi were used ubiquitously in premodern Korea to wrap items for transport or storage, to cover food, and even to protect precious goods. Designs range from embroidered symbolic depictions of nature to patchworks of random scraps of cloth in an array of colors…
On display in the Korean art galleries is one our latest acquisitions, added to the collection at last month’s Collectors Committee event. It is a tenth-century Seated Buddha, made of cast iron and especially notable for its size—it is the largest example of Goryeo Buddhist sculpture outside of Asia…