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Fascinating Photos From North Korea’s Architecture Tour Of Pyongyang (19 pics)

  • Category: Pics  |
  • 13 Sep, 2016  |
  • Views: 3788  |
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Not many people know what life is like in North Korea, but you're about to see a side of the country that not many people have seen before.

"The first word that comes to mind would be eerie," Olivier says of the general atmosphere in Pyongyang, North Korea.

1 Fascinating Photos From North Korea’s Architecture Tour Of Pyongyang (19 pics)

There are some three million people living in the nation's capital, and yet, most of Olivier's photos show vacant streets.


2 Fascinating Photos From North Korea’s Architecture Tour Of Pyongyang (19 pics)

He says people work, study, and keep busy out-of-sight in the daytime. Oddly, dramatic music blares throughout the downtown area.


3 Fascinating Photos From North Korea’s Architecture Tour Of Pyongyang (19 pics)

It's a relatively new city and one that is still evolving. The US effectively leveled the capital during the Korean War bombings, and the architecture of Pyongyang rose from the rubble in 1953 onwards.


4 Fascinating Photos From North Korea’s Architecture Tour Of Pyongyang (19 pics)

The country's founding father, Kim Il-sung, conceived of the new Pyongyang as "a great garden of Juche architecture," or of self-reliance.


5 Fascinating Photos From North Korea’s Architecture Tour Of Pyongyang (19 pics)

Concrete megastructures painted like Easter eggs dominate the skyline. These towers are meant to radiate strength, resilience, and national pride, according to Olivier.



6 Fascinating Photos From North Korea’s Architecture Tour Of Pyongyang (19 pics)

While the buildings aren't all that elegant, their intended durability represents one of the chief tenets of Juche ideology.


7 Fascinating Photos From North Korea’s Architecture Tour Of Pyongyang (19 pics)

"The city is an incredible showcase of beautifully preserved vintage socialist architecture, untouched by the visual pollution of commercial advertising billboards, flashy retails, or ugly office buildings," Olivier says.


8 Fascinating Photos From North Korea’s Architecture Tour Of Pyongyang (19 pics)

The Pyongyang Ice Rink, constructed in 1981, looks like a futuristic wigwam. It has space for over 6,000 spectators.


9 Fascinating Photos From North Korea’s Architecture Tour Of Pyongyang (19 pics)

Inside, Olivier found skaters of various skill levels killing time on the ice. Portraits of Kim Il-sung (the country's first supreme leader who also established Communism in North Korea), and his son, Kim Jong-il, hang overhead.


10 Fascinating Photos From North Korea’s Architecture Tour Of Pyongyang (19 pics)

The Pyongyang International Cinema House sits mostly abandoned on the city's edge. The bare concrete and sharp edges draw from the principles of Stalinist neoclassical architecture. The theater opens for special events, such as the Pyongyang International Film Festival, which is held every two years.


11 Fascinating Photos From North Korea’s Architecture Tour Of Pyongyang (19 pics)

Pyongyang is hardly void of culture, according to Olivier, though it may be difficult to find.


12 Fascinating Photos From North Korea’s Architecture Tour Of Pyongyang (19 pics)

"A very surprising aspect of North Korea is how real, simple, and human the place feels compared to how it is often depicted in international media," Olivier says. "It turns out people on the ground enjoy singing, laughing, and spending time with family and friends."


13 Fascinating Photos From North Korea’s Architecture Tour Of Pyongyang (19 pics)

He also noticed few people glued to their smartphones, due in part to North Korea's chokehold on the internet. It was "strangely refreshing," albeit for an unsettling reason.


14 Fascinating Photos From North Korea’s Architecture Tour Of Pyongyang (19 pics)

He watched a man get a haircut inside a state health complex.


15 Fascinating Photos From North Korea’s Architecture Tour Of Pyongyang (19 pics)

Olivier even caught a show at the Pyongyang Grand Theater, where the North Korean Revolutionary Opera performed.


16 Fascinating Photos From North Korea’s Architecture Tour Of Pyongyang (19 pics)

He snapped pictures when possible, mostly at designated stops on the tour. "As a tourist one is not free to walk around without guides," Olivier says. "The visited sites are carefully chosen and tours are well planned."


17 Fascinating Photos From North Korea’s Architecture Tour Of Pyongyang (19 pics)

Upon entry to the country, visitors are instructed on what they can and cannot take pictures of. Customs agents inspect your cell phone and other digital devices, including cameras, tablets, and storage cards, for banned content on your way out.


18 Fascinating Photos From North Korea’s Architecture Tour Of Pyongyang (19 pics)

In Pyongyang, you see what the government lets you see.


19 Fascinating Photos From North Korea’s Architecture Tour Of Pyongyang (19 pics)


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№1 Author: novw (9 Oct 2016 09:51) Total user comments: 181


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He must have had a pretty hard time capturing empty streets. It is BUSY like any other major town!
Customs does NOT inspect your pictures.

-> http://novw.nl/vakantie/2013dprk/quick.html
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