MoMA and MoMA PS1 Announce YAP Korea

MoMA and MoMA PS1 Announce YAP Korea

The Museum of Modern Art, MoMA PS1, and the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (MMCA) in Seoul announce a new partnership that will further expand the international MoMA/MoMA PS1 Young Architects Program (YAP) to South Korea. YAP Korea will provide opportunities for emerging architects in South Korea to create temporary exterior installations for summer programming at the MMCA. YAP Korea joins the annual YAP International programs at the National Museum of XXI Century Arts (MAXXI) in Rome; the cultural organization CONSTRUCTO in Santiago, Chile; and the Istanbul Museum of Modern Art in Turkey.

The inaugural YAP Korea installation-chosen from finalists by a team of representatives from both museums and representatives from the other YAP International programs-will open on July 8, 2014. Moon Ji Bang (Threshold), a project team composed of Choi Jang-won, Park Cheon-kang, and Kwon Kyung-min, was chosen as the inaugural winner. The Museum Plaza of MMCA will be offered as a project space for Moon Ji Bang's work.

"The Young Architects Program has now reached a truly global scope in its ambition to identify and endorse upcoming practitioners in different contexts," says Pedro Gadanho, Curator, Department of Architecture and Design, MoMA. "With the partnership with the MMCA in Seoul, architects from a continent where many exciting things are taking place are now also made visible in this international network, along with colleagues from North America, Europe, and Latin America."

Shinseon Play

From an initial pool of 26 architectural teams for the initial project, five teams were selected by a panel of six judges. Moon Ji Bang was chosen as the winner for its unusual approach based on the poetic and metaphorical concept of a leisurely life that will enable guests to enjoy an entertaining and unique experience.

Moon Ji Bang's winning proposal, Shinseon Play, is based on a traditional Korean fantasy. Shinseons are imaginary Taoist hermits widely shared in East Asian mythology, originating from around 2,500 years ago. They live on top of high mountains or above clouds, transcending the hustle and bustle of the human world of joy, anger, sorrow, and pleasure. Roughly equivalent to the ancient Greek gods, they occasionally descend to the human world to intervene or work miracles.

At the top of the air balloon structure proposed in Shinseon Play, visitors can bask in the summer sun as if walking through clouds; while below they can enjoy shade while sitting on the grass. A trampoline will be placed among the gently swaying balloons, so one can jump up and puncture the cloud of mist above, symbolically moving between heaven and earth. While walking above the "cloud" on a wooden bridge, visitors will experience a magic atmosphere, and face the grandeur of the Kyungbok palace and the Inwang Mountain.

Shinseon Play will be installed in MMCA's Museum Plaza from July 8 through October 5, 2014. The other 26 general YAP candidates and the five final proposals are slated to be introduced and displayed in Exhibition Hall 7 during the same period. The architectural works presented by five teams of final candidates in each city are also scheduled to be exhibited at MoMA, MAXXI, Istanbul Modern, and Constructo in Santiago.

YAP International

With its international partnerships, YAP offers selected young designers and architects across the globe the opportunity to create designs that promote diverse uses such as rest, play, and relaxation as well as hosting a series of live events such as shows, music, dance, exhibitions, and performances. In addition architects are encouraged to address environmental issues, including sustainability and recycling, to create highly innovative projects that provide shade, seating, and water. To achieve these goals, MoMA and MoMA PS1 are currently partnering with the National Museum of XXI Century Arts (MAXXI) in Rome, CONSTRUCTO in Chile, and Istanbul Modern in Turkey (on a biennial cycle).

This summer, Hy-Fi, the winning design by the architectural firm The Living, will provide the setting for the Warm Up music series at MoMA PS1 in New York. Using biological technologies combined with cutting-edge computation and engineering to create new building materials, Hy-Fi uses a new method of bio-design in a structure comprising 100% organic material.

The winner of the 2014 YAP MAXXI installation is Orizzontale (Jacopo Ammendola, Giuseppe Grant, Juan Lopez Cano, Margherita Manfra, Nasrin Mohiti Asli, Roberto Pantaleoni, and Stefano Ragazzo). The 8 1⁄2 installation is a translucent wall made of recycled beer kegs and an inhabitable timber podium that creates both a shining stage for summer events as well as a comfortable protected shadowed area, inviting people to rest, play, watch, and listen.

The winning design for the 2014 edition of YAP Chile, Wicker Forest by the firm Grupo Talca, is composed of a landscape formed by wicker sticks, stacked together forming a four meter high thick forest. The installation will catch particles dragged by the wind, while providing shade and movement. The components will be recycled when the installation closes.


A dedicated YAP International website,, features the selected proposals and designs from the winner of YAP International. The website also includes an archive of past MoMA/MoMA PS1 YAP finalists and winning proposals, interviews with the curators, and installation videos.

Pictured: Shinseon Play. Image courtesy of Moon Ji Bang.