About the Safe House

Feminism in Korea only really began to take root as a radical movement in the 1980s, and it remains controversial in public discourse. However in just the past few years the women's movement in Korea has grown into a sizable online community thanks to social networking sites. It has also manifested in public actions and demonstrations, particularly in response to the #MeToo movement.

This global revolution to assert the rights of women has already transformed attitudes in political and social circles, and changed cultural standards in schools, workplaces, and life in general. In this new climate, women increasingly feel empowered to speak courageously and publicly. But despite this evolution, it is still difficult in Korea for anyone to declare: “I am a feminist.” Asserting feminist beliefs in Korea can jeopardize friendships and other relationships—and in some situations can lead to being physically attacked.

Since I know firsthand these difficulties Korean women encounter when embracing feminism, as a curator, I’m creating a space for Korean women artists. I’m building this Safe House for them to speak their truths.

Mission & Goals

With Safe House, audiences will have a chance to experience both new and familiar concepts. Korean audiences will grapple with a concept of feminism that has only recently surfaced in daily life, but that nonetheless reflects familiar aspects of Korean culture. American or other non- Korean audiences will learn about Korean culture and attempt to reconcile familiar feminist concepts with the values of a foreign society. This will ultimately provide opportunities for cross-cultural exchanges. Finally, the show will introduce American audiences to a multigenerational group of contemporary Korean artists working in a variety of mediums.

Safe House 2020 — Curated by. Sungah Kang