Norway exhibits new photos for subway passengers
By Kim Se-jeong
Norway has brought part of its 2012 Yeosu Expo presentation to a subway station in Seoul.
Photos of a Norwegian fisherman with a salmon, a hiker overlooking a colorful mountain range in spring and a view of one of Norway's prominent concert halls embellish the walls of Samgakji station, a connection stop for lines four and six. A photo installation is standing on a platform.
"This exhibition focuses on the nature, culture and people of the Norwegian coastline. I believe sharing natural and cultural experiences is important, as it can open doors of friendship and cooperation on a people-to-people basis," said Trond Giske, Norway's minister of trade and industry who was in Korea last week to visit the Yeosu expo.
"I am proud to open an exhibition with this focus because the sea and coastline are crucial to both the Norwegian and Korean ways of life."
Norwegian photos in the subway station are nothing new.
Spearheaded by the former Norwegian Ambassador to Korea Didrik Tonseth, the embassy previously presented a wide range of photos depicting life and culture in Norway to Samgakji station. This has proven to be popular with passengers passing through.
The photos are seen by an average 100,000 passengers every day. A recent photo contest about the subway station had almost 1,200 submissions.
Norway-Korea ties go back to the Korean War (1950-53). The Scandinavian country together with Sweden and Denmark dispatched medical teams here. Expertise and equipment they contributed helped to start the National Medical Center in Dongdaemun, Seoul. The three countries opened up a museum at the medical center complex a few years ago.
Today's relations between Norway and South Korea are driven by commerce. Norway sees Korea as a valuable export market. It's less than five years since Norwegian salmon went on sale here.
Climate change and rising sea level demand bilateral cooperation in Arctic regions. Glaciers in the Arctic are melting. Norway is a member of the Arctic Council, a high-level intergovernmental dialogue channel through which members discuss pending issues.
Korea is one of five ad-hoc observer states along with China, European Union, Italy and Japan.