[KS] North Korean Flag & national emblem

almakoreana almakoreana at gmail.com
Mon Dec 31 15:49:23 EST 2012

[image: Inline image 2]
[image: 파일:Northkoreank1.jpg]<http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/ko/3/3f/Northkoreank1.jpg>

Heo Jong-suk and NK's 1st Cabinet members with KIS & Russian ambassador
General Terenti Shtykov, September, 1948

Re; Design of NK's National Emblem(and Flag)

According to the NK video attached here, the credit for the design of the
emblem goes to Heo Jong-suk(허정숙), the founding minister of the Culture and
Propaganda Ministry of NK. After NK designed their Flag in 1947, Kim
Il-sung orders Heo to design an National  Emblem.

In the video, Heo's Grandson(also Heo, his father changed his name from
Park) proudly looks back how her Grandmother struggled with the design but
with inevitably, help and advice from the jack-of-all-trades Kim and His
wife Kim Jong-suk, she finally comes up with the design in late 1948.

There is a strong possibility that Kim Chu-gyŏng may have involved in the
design but there is no mention of him in the video.  The funny thing is
that an Uriminzokkiri article about the design totally ignores Heo and her
team. According to that article the design was single-handedly done by who
else but  Mr. & Mrs. KIM. In NK only the Boss gets the credit.


On Emblem

On Flag

Wishing you a very happy New Year,

Yoo Kwang-On[image: Inline image 1]

On Wed, Dec 26, 2012 at 8:44 AM, Frank Hoffmann <hoffmann at koreaweb.ws>wrote:

> Happy Holidays to Everyone.
> Just an additional detail (not about some statue but the more
> meaningful, more symbolic North Korean flag).
> Professor Yong-ho Choe wrote:
> > Also, for the creation of the National Flag of North Korea, this is
> > what Mr. Pak told me. On another occasion, he was asked by Chistiakov
> > and Shstykov to explain the meaning of the old Korean national
> > flag--now the T'aegukki of South Korea. When he explained to them the
> > yin-yang principle of the T'aeguk and the hexagrams, the Soviet
> > leaders were very upset, saying that's a superstition. Not long after
> > that, the Russian authorities came up with a new flag, and that is the
> > present North Korean national flag.
> That makes sense. Let me add here that the person who was given the
> commission to design both, the new 1948 DPRK flag as well as the
> national emblem, was the well-known painter Kim Chu-gyŏng 金周經
> (1902-1981). As for yin-yang (resp. ŭm-yang) and the Russian aversion
> against that, please have a second closer look at that flag: the flag,
> in Korea mostly referred to by its short form "in'gonggi," does not
> show the overlapping hammer and sickle (☭) symbol as the Soviet flag
> and countless national flags of nations under the Soviet umbrella did,
> and not the later Korean hammer, sickle, and writing brush version
> either. It shows a five-pointed star (⁎) sitting on two legs (like the
> asterisk), colored solidly in red. Such a red star as such was
> certainly a typical symbol used by the Soviets to symbolize socialism,
> no doubt about that, no doubt that Kim Chu-gyŏng was somewhat limited
> by his new--at the time entirely Soviet--toolbox. But look again a bit
> closer and note that this red five-pointed star on two legs sits on (or
> within) a white colored circle, and the arms touch that circle. Note
> that this is often in more recent, imprecise fag reproductions not the
> case. But they should touch according to the original design--please
> see e.g. its depiction in following photo of the North Korean Arirang
> mass games (middle of page):
> http://blog.naver.com/PostView.nhn?blogId=prezkim&logNo=60017555598
> That gets us to a pentacle! In European and Middle Eastern history you
> will find pentacles with both, stars on one leg and on two legs (as
> here). Now, before you might look this up on and get directed to
> 'strange' places, let us recall that Kim Chu-gyŏng was trained in
> Western oil painting at the Tokyo School of Fine Arts, and that he was
> more than familiar with Western art history and symbolism. Someone like
> Kim would most certainly not want to produce a Soviet-style red star
> and coincidentally end up with a pentacle--that is completely
> unthinkable if you know a little more about the man and his work during
> the colonial period, where he had been one of the leading Western-style
> painters, since the 1930s very successful with his Post-Impressionist
> style, and in the later 1930s and early 40s someone who had found his
> individual experimental style, often using stark colors as they came
> out the tube (likely also being influenced by Surrealism). Kim is
> someone who prepared his landscape paintings like an architect would
> plan the construction of military barracks; in other words, they all
> look a bit like a depiction of Stanford U campus, just with surreal
> coloring schemes applied. There is a flood of information on how an
> ideogram such as the pentacle was used, but if you reduce that to art
> it all boils down to symbolizing the elements earth, fire, water, air,
> and spirit--a magical diagram of the Universe, or however you want to
> entitle it. Leonardo da Vinci has played with it in his "Vitruvian Man"
> (1487)--maybe you have that on your mouse pad, T-shirt, or coffee
> mug--and almost every other Renaissance artist has. I suggest we do not
> concentrate too much on the various interpretations around the pentacle
> over history and cultural region: important is that Kim Chu-gyŏng was a
> talented as well as head-strong painter trained in Western painting and
> modernism, and that he choose the pentacle because it is at its base
> just the same as what we read in the Yi Jing 易經 (better known in its
> Wade-Giles transcription as I Ching, the Book of Changes) with its
> hexagrams. I would say that this was a clever and appropriate way to
> circumvent Soviet criticism while not changing the essential yin-yang
> symbolism the historically older t'aegŭkki (today still the ROK flag)
> had.
> As also mentioned, Kim Chu-gyŏng also designed the DPRK national emblem
> (국장, Coat of Arms). For those not familiar with it, here a link:
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orders_and_Medals_of_the_Democratic_People's_Republic_of_Korea
> Click on the "Emblem" (middle) itself for a larger reproduction.
> As an elected member of the drafting committee of the first DPRK
> constitution it seems almost natural that Kim Chu-gyŏn was being asked
> to design flag and national emblem. He also became the first director
> of P'yŏngyang Art School, later to become P'yŏngyang Art University. As
> I had mentioned before, to me the design of the national emblem with
> its hydroelectric power plant and the shining red start over Paektu-san
> in the center, and with the crops on the sides, that looks to me like a
> perfect symbiosis of other socialist nations' emblems (Bulgaria, etc.)
> with the particular constructed, geometrically and mechanically
> calculated style Kim had painted his desolate landscapes all through
> the 1940s (and even into the later, North Korean period). So, apart
> from all the hype about impersonal socialist art styles--and for
> something like a national flag and a national emblem that can be
> expected--I still see a lot of personal stylistic expression here, and
> personal solutions also (in case of the flag) to express traditional
> symbolism within an otherwise clearly Soviet dominated period.
>  [NOTE to Korean bloggers and 'researchers' who kindly copied similar
> notes I made years earlier: please at least be so considerate to
> mention the source of your wisdom when reproducing this. I'll otherwise
> name your names and send you an invoice. Many thanks.]
> All the best for 2013!
> Frank
> --------------------------------------
> Frank Hoffmann
> http://koreaweb.ws
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