Sunday, August 28, 2016

Flashback: The Mucha and Studio Ghibli Layout Design Exhibitions at Seoul Arts Center

The Ghibli Expo reminded me of the other Ghibli exhibition I saw three years ago in Seoul, the first of its kind to ever take place outside Japan, and going back over my posts, I was surprised to see that I apparently never shared the pictures on here or included this particular event in any other post.
There were so many original sketches and animation cells in this exhibit that I had kind of hoped to see something similar in Roppongi on Friday and was a little disappointed when the very few sketches and hand-written notes displayed, upon taking a closer look, turned out to be photocopies.

Of course, with this exhibition no photos were allowed either, but Korea isn't as stringent and rule-obsessed as Japan, and this was the last day of both the Ghibli Layout Design and Alphonse Mucha exhibitions at Seoul Arts Center, so the place was a complete madhouse. They couldn't have kept track of the throngs of visitors closely enough to have kept photos from being taken even if they wanted to. And now that it's three years later, hopefully no one finds this, decides it's a problem, and asks me to remove it.

There were so many people that you had to take a number to get in and wait, and when I saw that I somehow had #53 when they were on #3000, I felt like Beetlejuice in the otherworldly waiting room for people in limbo. But, it actually ended up moving along faster than I would've thought.

They had an entire wall dedicated to visitors' fan drawings and doodles!

The original Princess Mononoke and Spirited Away drawings were the most pleasant, I thought; seeing all the ornately detailed tree roots and leaves like this as well as the cluttered desks and other surfaces filled with papers and magic tomes - that's the Ghibli magic, I guess. 
That warm homey feeling the films have.

Sorry I had to turn the contrast up so high on this one; it was pretty dim in there and I still had to be fairly stealthy about it, so all of these were taken quite quickly.

While seeing the original sketches for those classics was extremely pleasant, the painted backgrounds for Ponyo were totally breathtaking. They had some that were as long as entire walls. I wish I could've gotten more photos, but that area was more open and was actually being monitored (by staff who were so thinly-spread that I was still able to get several more quick, stealthy shots), and honestly I don't know if this post will stay up lol.

Glorious, right?

At the end there were a number of sketches and cels for The Wind Rises, which was released that year, shortly after this exhibition.

The Mucha exhibit wasn't as packed as the Ghibli one, especially since I was going into it right at the end of the day (and, again, on the last day of both). But that also meant I wasn't able to sneak any photos at all of the original, iconic posters we all recognise so readily.

The walls and gift shop were decked out to the nines, though. I almost blew 30 bucks on an umbrella but decided against it, since I already have a few, including a fairly similar Degas one.

And finally, on the outside of the Arts Center was a giant cutout of Howl's moving castle, as well as several little Totoro ones in the landscaping features. I wish you could see it better, but it was so dark, and the only dim lights were yellow! Boo! But I loved these exhibitions and miss making enough to visit such things without having to think much about it, as I lamented in the other post I've just dug up. Le sigh. Until next time, Seoul.

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