|September 5, 2023 ~ November 6, 2023
|Special Exhibition Hall Ⅱ (NFMK Seoul)
Traditional Decorative Knots, MAEDEUP
Donated Works By Lee Bu Ja
After having no idea what maedeup (traditional Korean decorative knot) was for most of her life, Lee Bu Ja happened to come across the craft in the middle of her life, and from that point on, began her new life as a maedeup artisan.
In the spring of 2023, 144 pieces of the maedeup works Lee devoted half of her life to creating have found their home at the National Folk Museum of Korea.
The exhibition is dedicated to showing maedeup donated by Lee Bu Ja. After studying with Kim Hee-jin (1934–2021), a master artisan of decorative knotting (a National Intangible Cultural Heritage), Lee added her own color and spin to the framework of traditional knots.
Just as the discovery of maedeup was a turning point in Lee’s life, we invite visitors into the fascinating world of maedeup, hoping that the serendipitous and refreshing encounter opens up new opportunities for you all as well.
Part 1. Introducing Maedeup
Maedeup is created by hand-knotting and tightening plaited cords (kkeunmok or dahoe), which have also been made by twisting yarns together by hand.
Often forming part of a larger object, maedeup is the shining, supporting character that enhances the dignity of the main character.
Maedeup have always been present in the lives of Koreans and can be seen in clothing and accessories, furniture, household items, and ceremonial or royal courts items.
Part 2.People Who Make Maedeup
Decorative knot artisans have been present throughout Korean history.
Whether it was knotwork accentuating the dignity of a royal family, a norigae (traditional Korean pendant) hanging from grandmother's mother-of-pearl wardrobe, or a bracelet that incorporates traditional knotting, all were made with care by someone's hands.
Part 3.Lee Bu Ja’s Life of Maedeup
The apple didn’t fall far from the tree: a shrewd student under a shrewd teacher.
Lee, having learned maedeup from knot master Kim Hee-jin (1934–2021), not only knotted, but also embroidered, sewed, and hand-crafted a variety of pieces that could be used in both traditional and modern contexts.
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