Journal #20/ “Faceless” artist touches divided Korea

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Sun Mu is the first artist from North Korea who became famous in South Korea. He was trained to create posters and murals for the Communist government. He refused to be photographed and chose to be a “faceless” artist because he was afraid that people would attack his family back in North Korea for his controversial art. His art is considered to be controversial because he purposely intended irony on his posters and indirectly attacked the Communist government. He used propaganda to criticize and mock the North Korean government. Sun Mu’s works including the “Happy Children” series were thought to be very representative of the happy life that the North Koreans were living in the Communist community. However, when the works were brought to South Korea, people began to realize the irony behind the art, emphasizing how the smiles on the “Happy Children” were fake and sarcastic. I think his use of satire and propaganda in his artworks are noteworthy because they arouse deep thoughts and questions. He manages to make his art pass both as a straightforward Communist poster and as a satirical piece. I believe that artists’ works have very important roles in raising the people’s awareness of larger political issues between North and South Korea because with art, people can directly see the problems in the different governments. Sun Mu’s posters, for example, represent the happiness or unhappiness of the  childeren in North Korea under the Communist regime and questions the government. I believe that artworks are more approachable for people because they take require less time and are easier to interpret than long news articles.

http://www.iht.com/articles/2009/02/04/asia/painter.1-410764.php?page=2

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February 20, 2009. Uncategorized. Leave a comment.

Journal #19/ My College Quickstart/ 020509

College Quickstart is a personalized tool that uses PSAT and SAT scores to help students find the right colleges and careers. The tools available on My College Quickstart are an online score report, SAT study plan, college matches, and major & career matches. One thing I found inconvenient about My College QuickStart was that it required an access code printed on the PSAT report in order to first sign in. However, once I got this figured, the tools that followed up were very useful. I personally think that My College Matches was the most useful because the tool automatically suggests a list of colleges that match my PSAT score and interests of majors. Though PSAT scores shouldn’t be the determinant of “matching” colleges, I think it set up a good standard list of colleges to begin with. In addition, My Major & Career Matches were interesting to look at. I got to read about a variety of different majors that I am interested in. I also found out about new majors other than fine arts and fashion design such as visual communications. Though My SAT Study Plan gave a good list of questions that I missed on the PSAT and stated some tips for improvement, I don’t think they helped me much. The tips that they listed were really basic things, such as to understand sentences that deal with abstract ideas and to apply ideas presented in a reading passage. These were obvious things that I knew already. In order to make this tool more beneficial, I think they should describe in more detail “how” to improve on the skills, other than to just simply state what the skills are. But overall, I think the College Quickstart tool is very useful for students.

February 19, 2009. Uncategorized. Leave a comment.

Journal #18/ “Up and Coming Schools” and “Narrowing Your Choices”/ 020509

While reading the article, “Up and Coming Schools”, I realized how there are many colleges out there that are not yet famous and popular, but are still very educational and attendable. But, most of the schools listed are liberal arts schools, which I am not planning to attend because I know for certain that I specifically want to do art in college. However, reading this article made me wonder that there might be many good art schools in the United States that I am not aware of. I’m planning on searching some unknown art schools on collegeboard.com and see if any of them are fit for me in terms of location, major, and size.

From reading the article, “Narrowing Your Choices”, I learned how there are many aspects of schools that I should take into consideration when I choose which colleges to apply to. The article mentions a variety of ideas, such as the school size, the location, the majors, and the campus. I personally thought that location was the biggest issue for me when narrowing down the list of colleges because I want to be in an urban area where there are many things to do outside of school such as hobbies and internships. The article also warned me how I shouldn’t be going to schools that my friends are going to or that my parents want me to go to. Afterall, I am the one who is going to go to the school, so I should be somewhere that I will be happy with.

February 19, 2009. Uncategorized. Leave a comment.

Journal #17/ Inauguration of President Barack Obama/ 012109

While watching the video of President Barack Obama swearing into office on January 20, 2009, I felt like I was living a very historical moment. I was glad that I was alive at the time of America’s first black president. It amazed me how most of the audience at the inauguration were African Americans. From their celebration and enthusiasm caught in the video, I could almost feel their satisfaction and pride at heart. I was surprised how there was no protection for President Obama. I thought that for such a big event like this, there would be glass shields or other protective devices surrounding the president, in case of accidents and crimes. In addition, when he studdered a bit while making the pledge, I thought that  this made him seem more human and approachable. I realized how even a powerful president could be nervous when he stands up infront of a lot of pe0ple. I am looking forward to his presidency of the United States and curious about how he will bring change to the nation.

February 18, 2009. Uncategorized. Leave a comment.

Journal #16/ The New SAT Score Policy/ 011909

I think students should have the choice of hiding low scores and selecting scores to send to the colleges in that a student may have been in a bad condition on the test date and unfortunately scored low. This will also allow students to present their best scores only and gain an advantage. However, at the same time, I also believe that schools should have the right to ask for all scores if they want. Getting access to all scores could help the schools in their decision making processes since they can learn more about to students because submitting all scores shows the students’ abilities to a greater extent. Meanwhile, having students select their highest scores will definitely make it harder for the schools with their admission process because all students will have such high scores. SAT scores will be very minor in the applications since there will be no high scores that will stand out from the bunch. Therefore, schools will have to pay more attention to other details in the applications such as extracurricular activities and other committments. Students will become more stressful when they are applying to colleges because they will have to have more committments that make them stand out of the applications pile and also have good SAT scores.

http://www.newsweek.com/id/172585

February 12, 2009. Uncategorized. Leave a comment.