Editor’s Note: We’re testing out a new approach to the Weekender. Instead of publishing a list of events every week, we’re covering the entire month and featuring select events paired with other activities. We’ll publish the Weekender at the beginning of each month, and we’ll continue to update it with new events as they come, so look out for announcements on our Facebook or Twitter.
WEEKEND OF JANUARY 12
View Cuban art at ARA Art center
With daytime temperatures just barely above the freezing point this weekend, it’s a good time to get out and do some gallery hopping in Jongno-gu. Drop by the newcomer ARA Art Center, a gallery megaplex between Anguk and Jongkak stations. Multiple stories means multiple exhibitions for your viewing pleasure. Most exhibitions at ARA are free, but a couple special exhibitions charge 10,000 won admission. If you’re socially-savvy and can read some Korean, purchase tickets to the Havana-themed modern Latin American art exhibition at a 45% discount on this social commerce site (limited offer!). Visit the gallery Facebook for photos of the exhibition. ARA Art Center (아라아트센터), 85-24 Gyeongji-dong, Jongno-gu, Seoul (Map). Open 10 a.m.–7 p.m. daily (closed Mondays).
Take old-school Korean photos at Gogan Photo Cafe
Granted, this hanbok studio/cafe serves mostly tourists or Korean couples commemorating the momentous 100th day, but for as little as 20,000 won per person, you could dress up in hanbok and take your own photos while enjoying traditional Korean tea. Starting at 60,000 won per person, they’ll throw in a two-page photo album and hair and makeup too. See what the experience is like here and use this SMS coupon to receive 20% off if you pay in cash. Gogan Photo Cafe (고관포토카페), 143 Insa-dong, Jongno-gu (map). Open 9 a.m.–7 p.m. From 40,000~150,000 won per couple.
WEEKEND OF JANUARY 19
Magic Strawberry Sound Flea Market
Sunday, January 20 from 4–9 p.m.
Indie music label/collective Magic Strawberry Sound hosts their first big event of 2013 this weekend: a flea market modeled after the spirit of London’s Bricklane and Tokyo’s Yoyogi. Don’t expect the typical flea market fare; many of these clothes, accessories and items belong to MSB artists like the lyrical Yozoh. In addition to the bric-a-brac, there will be shows at 6 and 8 p.m. by People and People (사람또사람) and light snacks to keep you warm and entertained. At Strawberry Sound (딸기다방), B1 level of 335-5 Seogyo-dong, Mapo-gu, Seoul (map). Free admission. Arrive before 6 p.m. for lucky draws including signed CDs. Visit msbsound.com (Korean) for information.
Enjoy indie music in Mullae-dong
Sunday, January 20 at 7 p.m.
At the helm of Mullae-dong’s burgeoning music scene is Lowrise, a music space that hosts “live music, parties, special events and ongoing contemporary art projects.” Drop by Lowrise on January 20 to see Mr. Headbutt From Daegu (박치기씨 프럼 대구), ECE (이씨이), Pigibit5 (피기비츠) and Heukyeomso (흑염소). Lowrise, 58-77 3rd floor Mullae-dong 3-ga, Yeongdeungpo-gu, Seoul.
There’s always something new at Mullae Art Space
Since you’re in the neighborhood, swing by Mullae Art Space for Mullae Diaries, the latest performance series by resident artist Won-seok Hong outlining the history of Mullae-dong since the 1930s. Mullae Diaries (문래일기) by Wong-seok Hong (홍원석). January 4 through 28. 10 a.m.–7 p.m. Mullae Art Space, first floor studio M30. Free admission.
Pork out at Donsadon
After you’ve had your fill of art, get your fill of pork to complete your weekend. From Mullae station, take the metro a few stops to Hapjeong Station and help yourself to some of Jeju’s best. Donsadon is best known for its thick cubed slices of pork BBQ and long lines on weekends. The minimum order (근고기, 36,000 won) is enough to feed a table of three (or a hungry table of two). Try their famous gochujang jiggae; it’s better than it sounds. Donsadon, 426-5 Hapejong-dong, Mapo-gu, Seoul (map). Open 5 p.m. to midnight daily.
WEEKEND OF JANUARY 26
Network at Linked Seoul “Getting Hired in Korea” Champagne Seminar
11:30 a.m.–2:30 p.m, Saturday, January 26
If you’re looking for a job or a change in career in Seoul, this helpful seminar combines the insights of an expat panel and HR experts with an irresistible champagne brunch. Gather your friends and get the group discount rate for 35,000 won per person. At Macaroni Market, 737-37 Hannam-dong, Yongsan-gu, Seoul.
Browse second-hand English books
About 40 meters east of Macaroni Market is the Beautiful Store Bookstore where you’ll find a modest but diverse selection of bestsellers and classics in English (and some pretty cheesy and outdated titles as well!). The bookstore is not marked on the building, so look out for a street banner (it’s on the third floor of the building with Hana Bank in the lobby, next door to the colorful IP Boutique Hotel). The Beautiful Store Bookstore (아름다운가게 책방), 737-28 Ahnsung Tower Suite 306 Hannam-dong, Yongsan-gu, Seoul (map).
Our Weekender selections are drawn from personal recommendations, internet scouring and sometimes even press releases. We try to be meticulous and current with our event listings, but events may change without notice. If you would like to submit an event, please send descriptions (in English) and photos to firstname.lastname@example.org.