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Thousands of visitors head to Jeju Island every year, drawn by its natural beauty. It’s also famous for museums and galleries — from cutting-edge contemporary painting to award-winning architecture, here’s our guide to the best places to get your cultural fix on South Korea’s island paradise.
Designed by world-renowned architect Tadao Ando, Jeju’s Bonte Museum is worth a visit for the building alone. It is one of Jeju’s lesser-known galleries, and thus has a peaceful, relaxed atmosphere. Exhibitions range from contemporary art (famous Japanese artist Yayoi Kusuma has a permanent exhibition space here) to Korean artisanal pottery and cultural artefacts such as an ornate funeral bier. The museum also has a sister gallery in Seoul.
This art project takes over four spaces in Jeju City’s Tapdong area, converting them into exhibition spaces. The buildings — an old cinema, a bike shop, and two motels — retain many of their original features to create interesting and innovative galleries. Both permanent and temporary exhibitions are on show.
This cultural art complex runs a residency programme for foreign and local artists, as well as art education programmes for local communities of all ages. The two large exhibition spaces normally display work by artists who have participated in a residency. It is located in Jeju City, in the former Jeju University Hospital.