1. Tate Modern
One of the most significant buildings in South bank is obviously ‘Tate Modern’. It looks beautiful and gigantic. Moreover, Tate is the famous contemporary art museum in London. Indeed I was really impressed by the fact that it is the symbol of gentrification. The south part of London was the industrial area which lags than the northwest area in 20Century. However, after rebuilding the thermoelectric power plant as ‘Tate Modern’, many artists gathered together at south London. According to the reading ‘tourist gaze 3.0’, tourists had interest to the ordinary life, they request to rebuild abandoned industries to the industrial museums to observe other people’s daily routine. This is because they wanted to experience real life except for the unauthentic tours. Furthermore, this movement changed industrial spaces to public facilities and Tate is a part of this change. Therefore Tate is a really different example of the development of Korea. Most public spaces in Korea were built after the previous architecture completely broken down. The design tendency of Korea architect pursues the newest and futuristic. Normally, the government of Korea did not want to keep tradition and old buildings. Refer to a good example like Tate modern, I think we should preserve the positive side of the old-fashioned area. However, some artists group in Korea show the same move like the plan of rebuilding the Tate. A few years ago, some artists organized small town at the empty spaces of iron foundries. The name of this region is ‘Mullae’. This town is not much huge like Tate, but artists tried to create a beautiful showroom and their workshop. Sadly, this town has difficulties to maintain. Nowadays, many artists moved to the new area ‘Sung-su’. It’s also an industrial area, many garages change to new public spaces for popular, especially Daerim Chango is one of the hottest places held exhibitions, concerts, and a cafe. I think it symbolizes gentrification like Tate Modern.
Next, I want to talk about the material of the buildings. The basic color of London what I feel is brown. The main reason for it is bricked. Most of London buildings made by bricks. It’s a huge difference with Korea because usually the building in Korea constructed by cement. We don’t have enough bricks to build a house. Interestingly, the red brick is the most expensive and represent the wealth and the brown or yellow bricks is less value than the red ones. In my case, I could observe many houses made by red bricks located at Chelsea and the building in South bank colored brown. I think it’s related by classification of social strata.
The UK in modern society, there are still the queen and royal family exists. This phenomenon is absolutely different from Korea. Our dynasty ended at 19C, however, Britain still keep the royal blood. The interesting happened in the UK there are a lot of private experiences divided by the classes. (Even I never have seen before) The descendant of nobles have a very secret society meeting and there are some places only for them. I think this related to the description of ‘Grand Tour’ and the holiday for upper classes( See Tourist gaze 5~6 ). The tour for upper class and middle-lower class already divided although in 21C the gap between the classes become smaller. As a result, the largest difference between London and my country is keeping the heritage or rebuilding new design rule.
I have found a lot of markets in London and these are prolonged for centuries. However, especially I have never been to Borough market before the field trip. I was a bit shocked because this market started in 1276. This example shows again that British thinks important to preserve their tradition. Additionally, tourists can enjoy the most active situation in the UK. However, I feel that is too ‘pseudo-event’. Boorstin believes that contemporary Americans cannot experience ‘reality’ directly but thrive on ‘pseudo-event’. ( Quoted by Tourist gaze 3.0 7p ) It means that the borough market extremely affects by the tourists. They sales too expensive ingredients than the local markets to earn more money from the tourists. Plus, some traditional foods in the market mimic the way of cooking and no longer sell the real traditional version of foods. It’s not the reality in London.
4. The lifestyle beside the river
In Korea, there is a huge river, Han which is similar to the Thames. British people send many times near the bridge and enjoy the luxurious night at the pier. Plus, citizen and tourists also enjoy riding a boat. This shows that always the river has important roles to develop a city. Both Korean and Britanian make diverse restaurants, cafe, public facilities and shopping malls along the river. In addition, they hold a lot of special events for the locals and tourists.
However, there are a little difference exists. The London much consider the ocean and pier than Seoul. Actually, I don’t know the exact reason but I assume that first matter is London is much closer to the coastal than the Seoul. The second, the western has a Viking culture. They try to keep this culture and show it to the tourists.
5. China town
If I go to other countries, there is always China town in every country. They looked always similar. China town in London, many different Asian cultures mixed not even Chinese. The decoration of lights in the main road looks like Chinese but It is hard to figure out the monument on the street followed which Asian countries. (Korea, Japan or Taiwan etc.) In Korea, there is also China town in Incheon. However, It’s much different from London. China town in London seems more suitable for Chinese and less localization than Korea. The Chinese restaurant in Korea’s China town the most of menu advertise zhajiangmian. Surprisingly, zhajiangmian is not Chinese food but 99% of Korean think zhajiangmian is the most representative food for Chinese. However, the foods in China town in London much fits for Chinese.