Concrete Seoul Map


Cette carte bilingue, qui présente plus de cinquante bâtiments en béton remarquables de Séoul, offre un regard unique sur l’histoire de l’architecture en béton de Séoul, des années 1960 à aujourd’hui. Parmi les architectes présentés, on trouve Chung-up Kim, Swoo-geun Kim, MVRDV, Steven Holl, Zaha Hadid, Sae-min Oh, Hee-soo Kwak, et bien d’autres.

서울에 지어진 가장 놀라운 콘크리트 건물들을 기념하기 위해 만들어진 ‘콘크리트 서울지도’는 양면으로 구성된 아름다운 지도로, 건축 역사 교수 김현섭의 소개 글과 사진작가 최용준이 촬영한 50개가 넘는 선별된 콘크리트 건물 사진으로 구성되어 있다. ‘콘크리트 서울지도’는 1960년대부터 오늘까지 서울과 서울 근교에 지어진 한국 콘크리트 건축물의 역사를 한눈에 살펴볼 수 있다. 건축가 김수근, 승효상, 김중업, 오세민, 곽희수 외에도 MVRDV, 스티븐 홀, 자하 하디드의 건축물이 포함되어 있다. 텍스트는 영어와 한국어로 되어 있다.



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Interview with Derek Lamberton, founder of Blue Crow Media

1 – You make the different maps on concrete or brutalist buildings. Why this interest in these constructions in cities?
Our primary interest is in Brutalist architecture. London, where we are based, offers a tremendous variety of Brutalist and concrete-built architecture. However, we find that other cities, such as Seoul, present their own take on the style and era, which doesn’t fit as neatly stylistically as does a city in the former Yugoslavia or Australia or Paris even. So we shift the focus from Brutalism to concrete, or to modernism, or to another style which might be more appropriate to the city in focus. I’m a small publisher, so the titles mostly reflect my own personal interests, but also those of our customers. More to the point, much of the 20th century’s architecture is underappreciated, due to a variety of often very valid reasons and emotions. But we think as time passes, now is a good moment to reflect on what was done well, particularly in the second half of the 20th century, and what we might be able to learn from and improve upon today. I think (or hope!) a focus on Brutalist and concrete architecture has the capacity to change perspectives.
2 – How were the buildings that appear on the map chosen? Do you have any guidelines for selecting concrete buildings?
We look at a number of factors when selecting a city to map, but the two most critical are the quality of the buildings and whether or not there is an expert to curate and research the map. We also have to decide upon a theme that we think will be both original and of interest to our customers – who have quite niche interests! For example, the Concrete Seoul Map was researched by professor Hyon-sob Kim, an architectural historian at Korea University. He has written widely on modern and contemporary architecture in Seoul. We discussed a variety of ways to approach this project, and found that the theme of concrete-built architecture offered a fascinating angle to explore the city and a great variety of interesting structures. In terms of guidelines, as the focus is on material, it makes things a bit easier, but generally we are looking for buildings which are remarkable in their own right, but also part of the narrative of the city’s architectural history. It works particularly well when arranged chronographically, as you can see the patterns of influence and piece together not only the aesthetic progression but the technical advancements as well.
3 – What are your impressions of Seoul ?
We visited Seoul in 2019 when the map was in production. The scale of the city was difficult to absorb, but it was fascinating to see how quickly layers of 20th century architecture pieced together. It was also surprisingly pleasant to explore even the most concentrated areas. One of the most interesting days for me as a publisher was visiting Paju Book City (which we include on the map). The idea of a planned city for the headquarters of 200+ publishing houses, really blew my mind, and even more so as so many of the buildings are beautifully designed and built with concrete (i.e. built to last). But this was all set up in the late 1980s, prior to Amazon and major shifts in publishing; it was impossible for the instigators and planners of Paju Book City to see this era of ecommerce coming around the corner. It felt to me like a final monument to traditional publishing. It will be interesting to see what becomes of it.