THE REFRAMING OF BEING FORGOTTEN
; GRAPHIC SCORE
Korea has developed rapidly for about 50 years.
Although K-pop has become a representative music genre in Korea, on the contrary, traditional Korean music has been forgotten, and even the younger generation have been ignored because they think it is old and outdated. At this rate, this tradition that identity and history of the nation are dissolved in could really disappear.
In fact, in 2011, China tried to own Korean historic and the soulful song “Arirang" by registering it as a UNESCO World Heritage site. If I were a musician, I would create a piece of new music by mixing it with other modern music genres to preserve, but I am not a musician, but a designer. If so, What can I do as an information designer to preserve Gugak that is becoming forgotten? Maybe, could I change their image? What if I could introduce this music in a different way?
I decided to redesign the form of the concert using a new medium while maintaining the elements of the traditional concert. First of all, I needed something to act as an explanatory pamphlet to make people understand the structure of this unfamiliar, boring music in a short time. I talked to So Yeon Kim, a Korean music expert, to answer this question, and she recommended an improvisation called ‘Sinawi’, which is suitable for the conversion of perception of Korean traditional music. Because ‘Sinawi’ is full of energy even in the song itself, I concluded that it is appropriate to change the thoughts of people who think Korean traditional music is boring. The problem was Since Sinawi is oral tradition music and thus there is no music score(Especially the music source I recorded). Korean music musicians have been learning for over 10 years, so they don't need a score because the structure of improvisation is already in their head. but people can easily become bored because people who are not used to listening to Gugak are not familiar with the sounds of even the traditional instruments. Of course, this music can be recorded using Western musical notation systems. But I decided to come up with a graphic music system as a designer so that everyone could understand this music more intuitively. So I started to listen and write down of five instruments' sound in Sinawi, and I created out a visualized score that was divided into plain notes, trembling notes, bending notes and resonating notes for the analysis. This made it possible for people without knowledge of Gugak to see it, understand its structure, I wanted to let them know that it's not difficult. This graphics score system was supervised by Dutch composer "Samuel Vriezen" and Korean traditional musician "So-Yeon Kim". Based on their feedback, I developed the music system.