Dispatches from South Korea: Paju Book City

This is another guest post by Jenn Pescoe from her recent travels in South Korea.


Paju, Bookcity, South Korea. After getting off the bus with my fellow travelers my first questions was: is this really an industrial and commercial printing center for the entire country? It’s really…pretty.

Not surprisingly, upon viewing the website for Paju I found this:

In planning and pursuing Bookcity, we continue to keep in mind the principles of book making that we use everyday. Book making is similar to architecture in that it takes pains to design and

if the design is not satisfactory, one begins again from scratch. Even in terms of design, just as a quality architectural design fully considers and researches the environment and climate of

the structural site, personality, occupation and number of people who are to occupy the space, as well as the necessary building materials, book making has similar considerations.When the

painstaking design process is over, the difficult construction phase of book making, where the material is procured and the building is raised according to the blueprint, begins. However, book

making at times requires just as much, if not more, expertise and time than building structures. Book making is indeed very similar to the process of erecting buildings. The spirit of book

making is instilled in the foundation for planning and pursuing Bookcity, which is an amalgamation of publishing and architecture.


My companions and I had come to this place, about 30 km from Seoul, to visit The Movable Type Workshop. The follow are pictures of our time spent touring the shop.

Follow this amazing tour after the jump!


The front room, complete with display platen presses.


You thought putting away english type was hard?


Examples of work printed with wood block.


…And a hand carved wood block.


Type everywhere!


Type specimen books and wee little hand moulds for casting type.


Casting brand new type in Korean!




Freshly printed books waiting to be bound.


I can’t read or speak Korean with any talent but, I want this.

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Categories: Current Events, Interesting Printmaking, Printshop Tour

2 Responses to “Dispatches from South Korea: Paju Book City”

  1. subbo says:

    Great post!