By Min Yea-Ji
Photos = Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism
Koreans consider Hanbok an outfit to wear on special occasions but the traditional attire has recently been modified to be worn daily at work.
Two exhibitions of Hanbok's beauty and practicality are scheduled from Jan. 12-29 at Ara Art Center in Seoul's Jongno-gu District.
The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism on Jan. 10 said it will jointly open with the Korea Craft and Design Foundation the exhibitions "Traditional Hanbok, Life Rituals" (unofficial translation) featuring traditional versions of the attire and "Wearing Hanbok for Work" (unofficial translation) displaying Hanbok-inspired uniforms on the job.
The first event reflects the value and meaning of life rituals, or ceremonies for crucial moments in a person's life for wishing that they adapt well to change, that are fading away due to busy modern life and Westernized approaches to lifestyle.
Ten new pieces of clothing for such rituals will be presented including those for the traditional coming-of-age ceremony for men and women, marriage, and rites to celebrate longevity and honor ancestors.
At "Wearing Hanbok for Work," 25 Hanbok-inspired uniforms designed last year for staff in the transportation sector like airlines and trains and those in leisure services will be unveiled for the first time. The creations express the beauty of Hanbok while remaining comfortable enough to wear while working.
The ministry said, "To welcome the new year, we organized the exhibition to ruminate on the beauty of traditional Hanbok and experience the comfort of Hanbok-inspired work attire," adding, "We hope that through this exhibition, Hanbok can be worn in daily life as comfortable clothing while maintaining its style and appeal."