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The Father of Dansaekhwa

Posted On: 27 Mar 2020   |   Posted By: Cereal

Visualise an 88-year-old man who's endured poverty, war, persecution, illness, hunger and neglect - and you won't see the artist Park Seo-Bo. In his perky trilby hat and sharp leather jacket, wreathed in smiles, he looks decades younger than he is. Yet he's suffered appalling privations, often going without food, and sleeping in a classroom when he had nowhere else to stay. As an art student during the Korean War, he used to stay behind at the end of the day in the hope that he might find fragments of discarded pencil, crayon or charcoal on the floor. When he had no materials at all, he drew with earth or stolen soy sauce. Yet to see him laugh now, you would think his life had been without cares. On Instagram, he poses for comical close ups of his gleaming bald head and competes with his wife to blow out the candles on their 61st wedding-anniversary cake. My favourite video clip shows the pair of them dissolving into giggles as they try to broadcast a happy-new-year message in Korean. Their words are...

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