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Do You Have Your Own Healing Place?Heawa Culture and Art Comples
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승인 2014.03.11  10:27:04
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▲ Heawa Culture and Art Comples located in Uijaero at the foot of Mudeung Mountain

Have you heard about Uijae-ro, the so called the second Art Street in Gwangju? Recently, a lot of art galleries and culture complexes on the street at the foot of Mudeung Mountain have taken center stage among Gwangju citizens. Among those places, 'Haewa Culture and Art Complex (HCAC)', which was opened last December, has some differentiated characteristics in that it has a facility for psychotherapy and provides various programs related mental health trough culture and arts. The Chonnam Tribune visited the complex and met some people to introduce it to CNU students.

Haewa Culture and Art Complex
    The HCAC is a complex cultural space with a variety of programs such as education, exhibition, counseling and facilities including a café and guesthouse. It was established by psycho dramatist Oh Jin-cheol and Kim Seok-jae, the principal of an alternative school, Pampuri Growth School in the Gwangju Yangji Hospital for healing outside a hospital. Therefore, experts in various fields from an art therapist to a philosopher are involved in the center.
It was formerly located near the back gate of Chonnam National University (CNU). There are still a café, a small theater and a counseling center in which psychodramas are performed. Some students used to take simple personality tests there as well. “We found a new possibility to be closer to people and planned to open one more quiet and ecofriendly cultural place far from the crowded town for more local residents. It is the reason that the HCAC was opened here near Mudeung Mountain,” said Park Mi-jin, an art therapist in the complex.

▲ An exhibition in the art center, Heawa Culture and Art Complex

Sympathy, Art and Education Centers 
    The HCAC is a three floor building that consists of a gallery, a cafe, a counseling center and a guest house for visitors. It is divided into three parts; Sympathy, Art and Education centers. The Sympathy center plays a role as a healing space not only for psychological consultations but also for psychodramas and various kinds of workshops related to mental health. Besides, a professional art therapist runs healing programs through art therapy. The center recently offered a Post-traumatic Stress Disorder test and diagnosis program for local firefighters and a family treatment program.
    The Art center is a facility for exhibition and operates a residency program for artists. Starting from an invitation exhibition of the Chinese artist Song Yong-hong which attracted visitor’s attention, it plans to hold 12 exhibitions with Song’s works within a year Education center operates programs focused on humanistic contents and psychology classes for both laymen and experts. The humanities class is opened once a month with Professor Park Goo-yong from the Department of Philosophy at CNU. In this class, the takers can broaden their knowledge of liberal arts with humanistic discourses. And one of the other regular programs is 'Haewa Barista Class'. Every Tuesday, any local residents who are interested in coffee can take this class. The participants make and drink their fresh brewed coffee. One participant said, “I got to know this program from my acquaintance even though my house is far from here. We can learn about various kinds of coffee and drinking them together. I am very satisfied with this program.”

▲ A counseling center at the Heawa Culture and Art Complex

New Plans for Local Residents
    Oh Jin-cheol as CEO of the HCAC said, “This center aims to be a place of 'rest'. Many visitors to the cafe, the gallery or the guest house can share their feelings and release their mental stress or wounds through diverse activities. So the art and sympathy centers are not different from each other, the art center exists as an extension of the sympathy center. In addition, both centers have mutual complementary cooperation systems.” From the back gate of CNU to Uijae-ro, the Haewa members work tirelessly trying to figure out how to make a natural healing space and grow together with local residents. Mainly using the natural environment around the HCAC, a Mudeung National Park Walking Course will be connected to a healing program and the guest house is planned to be a cozy and restful place for travelers or group program members. From this March, new programs including an esthetic class or a psychodrama class will start at the center near the back gate of CNU.

A Small Step to Relax Your Mind
    These days, may people feel uneasy as a result of different types of mental disorders, stress, and so on. But, they fear to speak about their psychological problems because of a sensitive society. Moreover, while people are very busy and tired, they need congenial people who can comfort them and share their feelings. We can take a small step for our mind in the Haewa. Anyone can make time for themselves while enjoying pictures at the gallery or drinking a cup of coffee. It is also possible to take a walk around the mountain with congenial people. So, the Haewa would be a good place where you can escape some burdens in your daily life.

By Oh Hee-su, Tribune Reporter

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What a nice place for me~!!^^
(2014-03-26 14:07:09)
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