Mastering Tradition: Yéol’s Modern Take on Korean Yugi Bronze Tableware – Documented by Nils Clauss and now featured in Cahier de Seoul
In a recent feature by the Korean-French blog Cahier de Seoul, the “YÉOL Artisan of the Year” project takes center stage, beautifully captured by filmmaker and cinematographer Nils Clauss. Kim Soo-Young in collaboration with modern designer Gio Kisang was awarded as the “YÉOL Artisan of the Year”. This project is not only a celebration of tradition but a visual journey documented by Clauss through the lens of video and photography.
Craftsmanship Beyond Borders
An intangible cultural heritage, Yugi bronze tableware, known as Bangjja, symbolizes Korean craftsmanship’s sophistication. Yugi’s high tin content sets it apart, making it a sterilizing and food-friendly object. It has a luminous beauty that intensifies with wear. Once a staple for Korean nobles, Yugi tableware lost its place in modern kitchens due to its weight and bulk.
YEOL Project through the Lens
Clauss, residing in Seoul, South Korea, played a crucial role in documenting the YÉOL project. His film, “Memories of an Artisan,” intricately weaves together the making of the Yugi bronze tableware. The making process is mainly connected to heat and fire. As and additional layer the film chooses the serene backdrop of a winter landscape adorned with ice and snow. The film beautifully captures the essence of craftsmanship and tradition.
As a photographer, Clauss chose a studio setting to display the Yugi bronze tableware against a white background. This creates a strong focus on the products’ inherent beauty. This visual storytelling technique highlights the craftsmanship in detail. It emphasizes the elegance that the modern reinterpretation brings to the traditional utensils.
YEOL Foundation’s Impact
Based in Anseong City, master craftsman Kim Soo-Young has been forging bronze tableware for over 40 years, preserving the Yugi tradition. YEOL supports various programs, including the YÉOL Artisan of the Year Award, aiming to reflect traditional craft values and create sustainable crafts for the future.
Nils Clauss – Filmmaker and Photographer
Residing in Seoul, South Korea, Clauss is not just a documentarian but a storyteller. His role as a filmmaker and cinematographer adds a layer of depth to the YÉOL project, bringing the intricate process of bronze tableware making to life on screen. As a photographer, his studio shots elegantly showcase the Yugi bronze tableware, emphasizing its timeless beauty.
In the heart of Seoul, South Korea, YÉOL‘s modern take on Korean Yugi bronze tableware stands as a testament to the enduring beauty of tradition, artfully documented by Nils Clauss. Explore the craftsmanship, history, and the collaborative spirit that brought this artistry to life through the lens of video and photography.