Korea’s First Lady Kim Jung-sook, BTS visit the Met in New York City

Published September 21, 2021, 3:31 PM

by Jonathan Hicap

South Korea’s First Lady Kim Jung-sook and special presidential envoy BTS visited the Metropolitan Museum of Art, or the Met, in New York City on Sept. 20.

Kim, who is visiting New York City with Korean President Moon Jae-in on the occasion of the 76th session of the United Nations (UN) General Assembly, visited the Arts of Korea Gallery, which opened at the Met in 1998.

BTS and Korea’s First Lady Kim Jung-sook at the Met (screenshot from Arirang News video on YouTube)

BTS went to the Met with the First Lady after speaking at the second Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Moment of the Decade of Action meeting held in the UN General Assembly Hall in the morning of Sept. 20.

President Moon appointed BTS as Special Presidential Envoy for Future Generations and Culture by South Korean President Moon Jae-in last July.

Also at the Met visit were Korean Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Hwang Hee and Korean Cultural Center-New York Executive Director Jo Yun-jeung.

The Met is the fourth most visited museum in the world and the largest art museum in the US. Since opening the Arts of Korea Gallery in 1998, it has contributed to promoting the tradition and beauty of Korean culture to people by hiring a dedicated curator and holding special exhibitions related to Korea.

First Lady Kim greeted BTS at the Met lobby and told them, “I was very impressed with the SDG Moment speech and performance this morning.” She and BTS went to the Arts of Korea Gallery, which houses Korean art collection.

Afterwards, they attended a ceremony to deliver Korean crafts on the roof garden of the Met. A Korean Lacquerware Special Exhibition will open at the Met in December.

“It is an honor to exhibit this beautiful work. 2023 is the 25th anniversary of the opening of the Arts of Korea Gallery so it is even more meaningful,” said Max Hollein, the Met’s director.

BTS’ RM said, “I think that we are today because of the efforts of many people to spread the greatness of Korean culture. In addition to K-pop, K-drama and K-movie, artists are also working hard.”