Culture

Gyopo – The Korean Experience

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Toronto artist Cat Lamora’s three-dimensional paper installation deals with the experience of a gyopo —  the term for Korean expatriates who have been citizens in their new countries for longer than a decade.

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Gyopo is a negative term for people who have been severed from their Korean roots. In the late 1990s, South Korea became the fifth-largest source of immigrants to Canada, seen as a new horizon for opportunities.

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The installation – titled The Aberrant – questions the effect of expatriation in Korean-Canadian gyopos. It’s on exhibit at Xspace Cultural Centre in Toronto through Feb. 23.

Having to lead a life of duality of two names, two cultures, and two homes, the piece hopes to express the balancing act that gyopos must struggle with. – Cat Lamora

Read more about how the installation reflects the Korean-Canadian experience in this accompanying essay by Seo Eun Kim.

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