#BLF 2018# MADE IN NORTH KOREA: GRAPHICS FROM EVERYDAY LIFE IN THE DPRK

MADE IN NORTH KOREA:

GRAPHICS FROM EVERYDAY LIFE IN THE DPRK

Nicholas Bonner, in conversation with Tomasz Sajewicz
Monday, March 19, 8pm |60 RMB – purchase link

During his 25 years of travelling to the DPRK, Nicholas Bonner has amassed one of the world’s largest collections of beautiful and quirky items of North Korean graphic design. These items – from stamps and postcards, to food labels, luggage tags, and cigarette packs – have now been curated for presentation in a unique single-volume book, Made in North Korea, published by Phaidon, alongside a number of informative and insightful essays penned by Nick. The book uncovers the fascinating and surprisingly beautiful graphic culture of North Korea, while providing new understanding into the country and its aesthetics. Nick will talk about his experiences collecting these unusual North Korean graphics, share his observations about the country’s visual culture, and answer any questions you may have — whether they be about the book, its genesis, his engagement projects, or what it’s like to have spent 25 years regularly travelling to the world’s most isolated country. Nick will be in conversation with Tomasz Sajewicz, Asia Correspondent for Polish Public Radio.

 

Nicholas Bonner was a lecturer at a Beijing university in the early 1990s when he met a DPRK citizen, and took his first trip to Pyongyang. The experience inspired him to set up Koryo Tours in 1993, and he’s been travelling there on a regular basis ever since. As a frequent visitor to North Korea over the last 25 years, Bonner — who is also an artist and filmmaker —became increasingly well known in the country, and was eventually granted unprecedented access to make three documentaries and a feature film, which have won him a number of awards at various major film festivals. His travel company, Koryo Tours, has taken tens of thousands of travellers to North Korea over the years, and Bonner continues to encourage engagement with the country. “We all have our own preconceptions about North Korea, but this tends to come from an extremely limited perspective, often resulting in very black-and-white viewpoints,” he says. “Over the last 25 years, Koryo and I have looked for ways in which to work with the North Korean people — whether that be through tourism, film, art or other cultural events — and promote engagement as a tool for creating dialogue and understanding.”

Tomasz Sajewicz is Asia Correspondent for Polish Public Radio, based in Beijing since 2005. In 2003-04 he was a correspondent in Iraq, based in Baghdad and Camp Babylon.

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