Hyosung, a protector of Korea’s cultural heritage
Changdeokgung Palace is regarded as one of the most beautiful royal palaces in Korea. Designated as a World Cultural Heritage by UNESCO in 1997, its value is already very well known. Hyosung Group signed an MOU with ARUMJIGI, a non-profit-making civic organization, and the Cultural Heritage Administration in 2017, and has supported the project to restore the lighting system at Huijeongdang Hall and Daejojeon Hall of Changdeokgung Palace. Through this project, Hyosung has taken the lead in restoring the value and dignity of Changdeokgung Palace.
Huijeongdang Hall and Daejojeon Hall of Changdeokgung Palace, where tradition and modernity coexist in beautiful harmony
Korea’s royal palaces are the structures that best represent the art and architectural style of the Joseon period. Furthermore, the Joseon palaces embody the dominant thoughts and ideas throughout the dynasty’s 500-year history. The nation’s palaces are imbued with the spirit and the techniques of the best artisans of the time, who poured their heart and soul into every single element of each building.
Huijeongdang Hall and Daejojeon Hall of Changdeokgung Palace, which play the role of a shelter in the middle of the city, are relatively unknown known among the public. These halls are rare cultural heritages where visitors can experience tradition and modernity in beautiful harmony.
Huijeongdang Hall, the Joseon Dynasty’s ‘Cheongwadae’ (Blue House)
Huijeongdang Hall was the place where the king slept and, from the reign of Joseon’s last King Sunjo, who was also the second Emperor of the Korean Empire, the place where the king worked every day. In other words, it was the present-day Cheongwadae, the Korean presidential residence, where the king took his meals, relaxed, slept, and held secret meetings with people. Huijeongdang Hall is also the place where the most political decisions were made in the country, and it is mentioned frequently in the Joseon wangjo sillok (The Annals of the Joseon Dynasty). Unfortunately, however, there are hardly any extant drawings or records of its construction, and due to the country’s historical circumstances, no restoration project has been realized properly. The Hall still bears the pain of our history.
Reproduction of scenes from Korea’s TV series Mr. Sunshine
Viewed from the outside, Huijeongdang Hall looks much the same as many of the other buildings at Changdeokgung Palace, but when you enter it, the hall reveals its characteristic features including a living room, a conference room, glass rather than traditional windows, and western-style tables and chairs, making you feel as if you are at one of the shooting locations of the TV series Mr. Sunshine.
Though you are sure to be enchanted by Huijeongdang Hall’s distinctive charm combined with the traditional construction style and modern interiors, you will also notice Hyosung Group’s efforts, including environmental improvements inside the palace, to restore the hall to its original appearance. The first maintenance work performed by our Group consisted in lighting up the interior of the hall, so together with the Cultural Heritage Administration and ARUMJIGI, we restored the interior space by installing electricity and lighting facilities including a chandelier, carpets, and glass windows, so as to recover aspects of the modern lifestyle of the palace in the early twentieth century. Recently, Huijeongdang Hall was especially opened to the public to show the restoration process, thus announcing the beginning of the restoration project including the lighting system that has lit up at Huijeongdang and Daejojeon Halls. Hyosung Group will continue to support the restoration and promotion of Korea’s traditional culture and its beauty and value.
Hyosung, as a ‘Korean Heritage Guardians’, conducts diverse cultural heritage protection activities
Since 2006, Hyosung has been carrying out environmental improvement activities at Changdeokgung Palace and Deoksugung Palace. In addition, the company has been executing a project to conserve and restore the interiors and traditional style of the interior spaces of Daejojeon Hall and Huijeongdang Hall at Changdeokgung Palace, in collaboration with the Cultural Heritage Administration and ARUMJIGI. Hyosung Chairman Hyun-Joon Cho emphasized that Hyosung, “as a ‘Korean Heritage Guardians,’ will continue to conduct a variety of cultural heritage protection activities together with the ARUMJIGI Foundation.”
Written by Gwon Oh-sang (Assistant Manager of Communication Team at Hyosung Chemical)
Photo by Han Soo-jeong (Day40 Studio)