Korea's new wave of photography dares

Let's meet up-and-coming Korean photographers who have managed to break free from the rigid cultural constraints of past decades. Artists who accepted the Western way of life, subordinated it to their standards and made it completely their own, unique.

For Hallyu, the wave of Korea's new cultural wave, can be said to act more like a sea of pop icons and actors (G-Dragon, Girls Generation) and young rising stars (Neon Bunny). Colorful popular culture is commonplace in South Korea these days, and it's hard to imagine that things were different just thirty years ago. South Korea was once under a strict dictatorial regime, and long after the disastrous war, it was healing the wounds that had been inflicted on it by the terrible devastation. However, with the adoption of Western fashion, modern music and controversial artists - such as Juergen Teller, Terry Richardson and Ryan McGinley - it has experienced a picturesque boom in the last decade. We can look for evidence of this especially in the younger generations.

Young Koreans are not afraid of sexuality, boldness and, above all, openness.
Young Koreans are not afraid of sexuality, boldness and, above all, openness.

In spite of the fact that young Koreans have accepted the club culture, they have certainly adapted it to themselves, to their standards, and made it completely unique. This is especially evident when examining the works of some of their best contemporary photographers, who are not afraid of sexuality, boldness and, above all, frankness. They push forward, shake off the norms and talk about the body, sexuality, plastic surgery and the rest of the daily life of Korean society. Above all, they allow us to enter their colorful cultural environment. So let's get to know young successful Korean photographers who dare.

Hasisi Park

Hasisi Park is a darling of Western photography publications. Once the muse and subject of ex-partner and photographer Jackson Eaton, she is now a world-renowned multimedia artist and photographer. Hasisi shoots for eccentric Korean brands such as The Centaur, but also works a lot with Koreans K-pop idols. Her portraits are dominated by intimacy and beauty, which under a watchful creative eye intertwine into a beautiful story.


Kim Tae Kyung, otherwise known as Less, captures in his photographic lens the glamorous worlds of fashion and pop music, which almost every Korean girl aspires to. Currently, his work revolves around K-pop musicians who dominate the Korean popular music scene. Some of the loudest are Boa, Super Junior, F(x), Shinee, Brown Eyed Girls and IU. Anyone who knows even a little bit about K-pop can vouch that the list is extremely impressive. Less tries to make his subjects look natural and relaxed in his photographs, which he achieves through conversation. This kind of behavior is extremely unusual for Koreans, which makes him all the more appreciated and special.

READ MORE: Bizarre Japanese inventions

Nina Ahn

Korean new wave artists place great emphasis on reflection, thinking about big life decisions. They are especially intrigued by the postponement of certain cultural norms to a later time. Above all, they wonder whether it is worth devoting their lives to the world of show business at the expense of a traditional married life. Nina Ahn she is an artist who captures these moments in the lens, a dreamy world of contemplation and daydreaming. Like most Korean artists, she does not have a university degree in art. She herself believes that she would not be able to stand competition at school, and that she takes photography as something pleasant, a hobby that brings joy to her life.

Aston Husum Hwang

Husum, who loved taking pictures of his relatives on frequent family outings while growing up, is now famous for taking pictures of his friends going wild in Korean nightclubs. The young photographer says he loves alcohol, hip-hop and photography. He combines all his loves during a visit to a nightclub, where he photographs cool people, liberated by the relaxed atmosphere and copious amounts of alcohol consumed.

With you since 2004

From 2004 we research urban trends and inform our community of followers daily about the latest in lifestyle, travel, style and products that inspire with passion. From 2023, we offer content in major global languages.