Mansudae Art Studio
North Korea’s top artistic studio. It is tasked with designing all of North Korea’s large monuments as well as the portraits, statues, paintings and murals featuring its leaders, which it alone has permission to produce. The artists here also create all kinds of other art and even even produce works for the international market. They work in sculpture, oil painting, Chosonhwa (a style that fuses traditional East Asian ink-painting with elements from Western oil painting), ceramics, and calligraphy. In our tour we’ll be able to view the workplaces of local artists, and chat with them about their work. We’ll also see the studio’s shop and gallery.
- High quality artworks can be purchased at the shop. They can be quite expensive though so if this interests you, bring some extra cash!
Best times to visit
The studio was founded in 1959.
- Only artists belonging to this studio have permission to draw images of the leaders. Thus the paintings and murals of the Kim family that are spread throughout the country are all produced by this studio.
- The portrait badges worn by each adult North Korean are designed by the Mansudae Art Studio.
- Mansudae Art Studio has also designed and built many of Pyongyang’s, and the country’s monuments, such as the bronze statues of the leaders placed in each city, the Party Founding Monument and the Chollima Statue.
- The Mansudae Overseas Project Group, a subdivision of the studio, has worked on many overseas projects. Most of these have been bronze statues of African leaders. The largest and most notable of their overseas projects is however the African Renaissance Monument in Senegal, standing at 50 metres. They were also commissioned to restore an art nouveau fountain in Frankfurt, Germany.
- Wikipedia article on Mansudae Art Studio:
- Art Under Control in North Korea by Jane Portal:
- Exploring North Korean Arts edited by Rudiger Frank:
Monument, Revolutionary, Art, Sculpture, Design