Gwangju Design Biennale 2013
1200 Chipyeong-dong, Seo-gu, Gwangju, South Korea, Gwangju, South Korea
Titled Anything, Something, the 5th Gwangju Design Biennale will explore cultural habits, shared knowledges, and coded contexts that inform the many unspoken ways in which we communicate with one another. Our use of empty or ambiguous signifiers or placeholders, such as “anything” and “something” key into different elements of communication beyond literal speech such as emotional and cultural prompts as well as responses. The ability to grasp these hidden contexts and habits in our day-to-day communication can be especially important for designers who constantly search for insight into new, subconscious or concealed needs and wants. This exhibition concept is inspired by two Korean words widely used in the Jeolla province, “GUSIGI, MASIGI,” to refer to an object or idea when the actual name escapes the mind, and is equivalent to the phrase “what do you call it” in English. “GUSIGI, MASIGI” are excellent keywords for designers sensitive to both familiar and new environments who strive toward creative forms of understanding and expression. The Artistic Director has interpreted GUSIGI, MASIGI as Anything, Something, because the characters ‘것’ – gǔt represents ‘thing’ and ‘멋’ - mǔt represents ‘value’. Anything gestures to the day-to-day task of designers to create an endless storehouse of ‘things,’ while Something points to the designers’ value-creating role and task to identify specific needs and forms. The 5th Gwangju Design Biennale will be organized around the following five components—a Thematic Exhibition, a Gwangju Exhibition, an International Forum on Design, a Workshop, and a Public Participation Program.