After my wife became pregnant, she joined the Busan Momsholic. Momsholic Baby is a national club in Korea which was set up for both pregnant women and mothers. They provide an online community as well as a number of off-line opportunities to meet and participate in activities. Recently some of the expectant members, along with their partners, signed up on a first-come-first-served basis to a one-off pottery class and my wife and I went along at a cost of 10,000 won per couple.
The class was being held at the Nature Ceramic Studio in the Haeundae district of Busan, which is high up on a hill with some rather attractive views of the sea, near a large restaurant curiously entitled Tom's Dinner (sic). The Studio regularly hosts classes in various rooms, but perhaps because it was a Sunday we were able to work in the main gallery which forms the store front.
A photographer was in attendance and while he snapped away he told us that the previous group had been very serious and we should try and have fun. That proved to be easier said than done; with most of us operating beyond our comfort zone even with the guidance provided by the teacher, it seemed to be an activity requiring all our concentration. So I think he'll be telling the same story to the next group.
The plan for today's class was to create oil burners. My wife and I decided to fashion a house of sorts, with the roof serving as the oil reservoir. Gradually, this evolved - more by accident than design - into two houses, one with a vaguely Mediterranean feel I suppose. The other, by virtue of it being much smaller and more haphazard in construction and finished design, looked suspiciously like the kind of Korean house you can still sometimes find deep in the countryside. This wasn't lost on the other people present - 'ah, that looks just like a Korean house' they said 'you've developed a fusion design!' Fusion is anything here that mixes Korean with anything non-Korean - from fusion food to our 'fusion' baby. I wasn't really comfortable with the outcome - the 'Korean-style' house looked so ramshackle and inferior to the one below it that it ran the risk of not being so much a fusion as an editorial comment. Anyway, we won't give up our day jobs.
In the end, I don't think any of the couples had much of a chance to socialise, so if that was the intention it probably wasn't successful. But since it is perceived that the process of artistic creation is 'good for the baby', it presumably served its purpose.