While manga is one of Japan’s most powerful mediums, with a huge influence on many industries including publication, film, games and even electronics, the art world has never quite embraced it as high art.
Unlike in some exhibitions fe aturing comic strips which simply display the original illustrations, exhibition designer Toyoshima Hideki created something like a 3-D realization of the comics by adding whimsical props and installations that look like they just popped out of the comic books.
The section dedicated to Wakaki Tamiki’s “The World Only God Knows,” for example, is presented like a classroom with a chalkboard, a lecturn and 12 desks and chairs, just like it is illustrated in the comics. Brief introductions on the characters are written on the board in adorable handwriting.
The complete collection of the comics featured in the show are on display on the first floor of the museum. A guide book is distributed to visitors so even those who are not familiar with the original works are able to get a picture of what they are going to see before jumping into the sea of 3-D realized imaginations.
The exhibition runs through Feb. 13 at Artsonje Center in Hwa-dong, central Seoul. Tickets are 1,500 won for students and 3,000 won for adults. For more information, call (02) 733-8945 or visit www.artsonje.org/asc.
By Park Min-young (email@example.com)