[KS] Percival Lowell

Frank Hoffmann hoffmann at koreanstudies.com
Tue Apr 21 03:15:19 EDT 2015

Dear All:

Here is something to enjoy!!!

But first: there is one more point I like to add -- did that years ago 
already, but it was not taken on -- so allow me to repeat it in this 
new context:

PRESERVATION problems with hats are said to be a reason why there are 
so few serious studies. Hats cannot be preserved, etc. -- that was one 
of the points. First, up to the 1960s there were still plenty of hat 
makers around. Second, if we take that argument serious, then I would 
at least like to look at it from a different angle: in traditional 
Korea there was POSSIBLY less an interest in preservation. Repeating my 
old argument: there was nothing that comes close to the 'kura' 倉, the 
storehouses of Japan. Nowadays there even is a Wikipedia entry for this:
Many of these were fireproof, they were away from the main house (so, 
if that burned, the kura would not), and some were even build like a 
bunker underground. That is one of the main reasons why large 
collections of art and documents of all sorts survived in Japan but not 
so in Korea. Japan hat its own wars -- wars are certainly responsible 
for destructions, no doubt. But such systems of preservations -- or the 
lack thereof -- are also.

Okay, and here a collection of Korean hats that you might enjoy looking 
at Korean Research Institute of Cultural Heritage who took on the new 
The city of Leipzig in eastern Germany did in 1902 buy a collection of 
over 1200 (!) Korean items -- art, cloth, jewelry, and tools for daily 
use. The entire collection was bought from a Hamburg art dealer of the 
name H. Saenger. That dealer used and abused the periods of political 
unrest and instability in Korea to buy just about everything he could 
get, to then resell it (and the Grassi Museum in Leipzig became his 
customer). Among the items are many that seem to originate from the 
Korean court.

In any case, this is something to enjoy! Have a look at the new 
catalog, and the Korean hats (with good good descriptions) -- and as 
you see, preservation of horsehair hats seems not the issue there (if 
there is an interest to do so).

Grassi Museum - Korean Collection Catalog (2013)
(64 MB -- so, download takes a while)

There are many highly interesting, beautiful, and refreshing works -- 
but you will find the hats on pages 189, 195, 240-271 (!!!).
Following that section, you will find many hairpins, headbands, hat 
ornaments of all sorts (some seem Chinese), and later there are also 
military helmets (pp. 570 ff) and more.


Frank Hoffmann

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