Jan 8, 2019

Cityscape of Pyongyang

Cityscape of Pyongyang


late 1800s

Kim Yoon-bo 김윤보

(Korean, 1865–1938)

Ten-panel folding screen; ink and color on silk

Painting: 98.3 x 307.3 cm (38 11/16 x 121 in.); Overall framed: 210.2 x 325.5 cm (82 3/4 x 128 1/8 in.)

Partial purchase from the Severance and Greta Millikin Purchase Fund and partial gift of The Honorable Joseph P. Carroll, KM, and Roberta Carroll, M.D. 2022.141


Did you know?

By the end of the 1800s, Pyongyang, now the capital of North Korea, was nicknamed the “Jerusalem of the East” for its high Christian population.


Today Pyongyang is better known as the capital of North Korea, one of the world’s most oppressive regimes. But during the Joseon dynasty (1392–1910) the city was largely famous for three things: good local government, economic stability, and talented entertainers. Thus, the king's favored senior court officials were often appointed to Pyongyang's governor prior to their full retirement.

Painted by Kim Yoon-bo, native to Pyongyang, this folding screen provides us with a better understanding of the late 19th-century Korean landscape paintings characteristics with topographic accuracy without losing the sophistication of calligraphic brushwork.

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