Korean Dream - PhMuseum

Korean Dream

Filippo Venturi

2017

North Korea

Between 1905 and 1945 Korea was dominated by the Japanese, thus becoming a colony of the Empire. In 1945, after Japan's defeat, Korea was involved in the Cold War and became an object of interest for the USA, the URSS and lately for China as well. This brought to the division of the country in two along the 38th parallel and to the Korean War between 1950 and 1953. On the 27th of July of 1953, an armistice was signed but a declaration of peace never followed, leaving the country in a permanent state of conflict.

North Korea is officially a socialist State with formal elections but in fact, it is a totalitarian dictatorship based on the cult of the Kim dynasty, practically an absolute monarchy. Since 1948 the country was ruled by Kim Il-Sung, the “Great Leader”; in 1994 his son, Kim Jong-II the “Dear Leader” succeeded him and until in 2011 Kim Jong-Un, his son, the “Brilliant Comrade” became Supreme Leader.

North Korea is one of the most secluded countries in the world, we know little about it and the citizens' rights are subdued to the country's needs. Citizens have no freedom of speech, media are strictly controlled, you can travel only with authorization and it is not allowed to leave the country. The few foreign travellers who get the visa can travel the country only with authorized Korean guides, who have also the task of controlling, censoring and finding spies.

Pyongyang, the capital, is the centre of all the resources and the country's ambition to boast a strong and modern façade (the rest of North Korea is composed of countryside, rice-fields and villages usually with no water, electricity or gas).

The continuous and incessant propaganda against the US portraits the South Korean population as a victim of the American invasion; young generations live in a constant alert state as if the USA could attack any day. At the same time, the propaganda aims at instilling a great sense of pride for the country's technical progression, fueled by the Supreme Leader and culminating in the atomic bomb and the subsequent tests.

Pyongyang youngsters have been educated to be learned and knowledgeable people, especially in the scientific field, to foster the development of armaments and technology, chasing the dream of reuniting Korea in a whole and free state.

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  • A moment during the show organized for the visitors of the Children Palace "Mangyongdae", near Pyongyang. This place is dedicated to children from 6 to 17 years old, about 5.000 children come here after school to learn how to use a computer, how to dance, sing, play an instrument, practice sport etc.

  • A photographer in charge of following, checking and censoring journalists, while he takes a picture of me in Pyongyang’s metro.

  • Study Hall in the Science and Technology Building, in Pyongyang.

  • 4D cinema theatre inside the Science and Technology Building, in Pyongyang.

  • Kim Hyang, 22 years old, works at the "Meari Shooting Range" of Pyongyang.

  • A child in the week-playschool “Chang Gwang”, in which Koreans can leave their children there on Monday and take them back home on Saturday.

  • Captain Choe Un Jong, 26, inside the American spy ship USS Pueblo, captured on the 23rd of January 1968 and in 2009 located in the Taedong river, now one of the major attractions of the Victorious War Museum in Pyongyang.

  • Taekwondo North Korean national team in the Taekwondo Hall in Pyongyang. In June, the World Taekwondo Championships 2017 will take place in Muju (South Korea); the North Korean athletes can take part in it but only for a public demonstration, since the very North Koreans estimate them too strong to compete in the tournament.

  • Koreans in "Munsu" aquatic park, in Pyongyang.

  • Study and music-listening hall inside the “Grand People's Study House” library in Pyongyang.

  • Fitness hall inside the Beauty Center “Ryu Gyong”, in Pyongyang.

  • Children Palace “Mangyongdae", near Pyongyang. This place is dedicated to children from 6 to 17 years old, about 5.000 children come here after school to learn how to use a computer, how to dance, sing, play an instrument, practice sport etc.
    In the centre a reproduction of the satellite Kwangmyongsong-4, put into orbit in 2016 and a great national pride.

  • Korean students while studying in the Pyongyang Circus Square, as they wait for the show to begin.

  • Koreans playing billiard inside “Munsu” aquatic park, in Pyongyang.

  • Young girl Kim, 12 years old, attends and is a guide inside the Children Palace “Mangyongdae", near Pyongyang. This place is dedicated to children from 6 to 17 years old, about 5.000 children come here after school to learn how to use a computer, how to dance, sing, play an instrument, practice sport etc.

  • "Mangyongdae" amusement park, near Pyongyang.

  • Colonel Jon (he did nt reveal his whole name), a military man for 40 years, on the North Korean border of the DMZ zone in Sok Ju Won (near Kaesong). Far away the wall built by South Korea. DMZ is 287 km long and 4km wide and – notwithstanding the name – is the most armed border in the world.

  • A child in the week-playschool “Chang Gwang”, in which Koreans can leave their children there on Monday and take them back home on Saturday.


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