The Ghost, The Reaper, The Rock & The Hops.
Exploring the Art at Gamcheon Culture Village (감천문화마을)
For more photos and videos of the village’s art, explore the 감천문화마을 (Gamcheon Culture Village) location page.
Gamcheon Culture Village (감천문화마을) in South Korea is a small village filled with art and history. Located on a mountainside in southern Busan, locals often compare the village’s view of dense buildings to Greece’s Santorini, Peru’s Machu Picchu and even Lego blocks for its shape and colorfulness. Inside the village, narrow alleys spread throughout the city like a maze where people are likely to run into multi-colored buildings, quirky art installations and stylish galleries.
The village, also called Taegukdo Village, was founded in 1918 when thousands of people, many of them followers of the Taegukdo religion, fled to the war-free area of Busan. As a village settled by war refugees, it existed as one of the poorest areas in the region until very recently. In 2009, the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism launched a project to preserve the village, turning it into the artistic community it is today. Now, the picturesque scenery the village provides is known to be a great place for photos, and many local and visiting Instagrammers alike come to document and share the art found all over the city.
Friday GIFday: the many Venuses (Venusii?) of Hiram Powers.
Selections from: Page of photographs of various works by Hiram Powers and two images of the artist, 186-? / Longworth Powers, photographer. Hiram Powers papers, Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Celebrating Easter in Sweden with Påskris
For a look at how Easter is celebrated in Sweden and across Northern Europe, browse the #påskris hashtag.
In the spring, florists, markets and city centers in Sweden display twigs and trees sprouting some unexpected blooms: feathers.
Påskris, or “Easter twigs,” refer to birch twigs that have been decorated after being cut and tied together. These Easter trees, especially when displayed in the home, are adorned with colorful feathers, eggs and more.
Beginning in the 17th century, Christian Swedes used påskris—without the feathers—to strike one another as a reminder of Jesus’s suffering. During the 18th century, however, påskris transformed into a more vibrant (and less painful) tradition and have spread to other Nordic countries.
Påskris are placed in water-filled vases and provide bursts of color that Sweden’s spring cannot supply due to its harsh and lengthy winters. If one is lucky enough to find twigs with some early blooms, however, the leaves grow and provide natural color to the påskris, bringing the new life of spring into the home. The more courageous locals will also bring these bursts of color outside the home by adorning the trees that line streets and city centers with colorful feathers and decorations to celebrate Easter and welcome the spring.
Exploring Portland’s Cathedral Park
In the northernmost part of Portland, Oregon, the iconic St. John’s Bridge extends across the Willamette River. Though the bridge has become known for its green hue and distinctly pointed towers, the park underneath has also come to enjoy a fame of its own.
The bridge’s stylized architecture continues even into its soaring concrete supports, which resemble the arches of a Gothic cathedral. Taking its name from the supports, Cathedral Park opened in 1980—a stark change from what had nearly been a junkyard beneath the bridge a decade earlier.
Now, the park’s lush meadow spaces, proximity to the river and dramatic backdrops create a special draw for local and visiting Instagrammers, making the space a favorite for creative outings and InstaMeets.
Por las barbas de Merlín!