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316 Seukang Li’s Suggestion 1 – Part 1

 Gun-Ho received a lot of mail that day, not just the mails to GH Mobile, including spam, but also the mails addressed to Dyeon Korea.

Gun-Ho went through the mails before throwing out everything except the mail from China sent by Min-Hyeok Kim, and the world-history cartoon books from GH Media for the fifth and sixth books.

"There are several pages of the pamphlet in the mail from Min-Hyeok. An art exhibition for Chinese young painters? I don't know much about paintings, but these look like the watercolor paintings painted by elementary schoolers."

Gun-Ho then moved to the next pamphlet.

"Oh, this is about the art exhibition for the world-renowned artist-Mr. Chao Chin's relics. So, I guess this painter passed away already. Well, his paintings are strange, and they are too Chinese. What's the next one? Chinese avant-garde art? This art exhibition is still going on in Shanghai."

Since Gun-Ho didn't know much about art, he wanted to hear some professional opinions about it. Gun-Ho made a call to President Jeong-Sook Shin in GH Media, who used to work as a curator in an art museum before.

"President Shin?"

"Yes, sir, this is Jeong-Sook Shin."

"I've just received the cartoon books you sent to me. How are things going there?"

"We have published up to the sixth book of these cartoon series, and they are selling very well."

"Director Seukang Li sent me several pamphlets through Min-Hyeok Kim from Shanghai. These are art exhibition pamphlets. I will send these to you by mail. I think you should look at them."

"Can you tell me what sort of art exhibitions are they?"

"These are about art exhibitions for Chinese young painters and for the world-renowned artist-Mr. Chao Chin's relics, etc."

"I see."

President Jeong-Sook Shin didn't sound very excited.

"Oh, there is one more. It's the Chinese avant-garde art exhibition."

"Oh, really? You have their pamphlet too? Please mail them to me. I've read about that avant-garde art exhibition on the Internet."

"These paintings look strange to me, but I guess you like them."

"Chinese young artists' avant-garde arts are highly recognized in other countries. For example, there is a painter named Zhang Xiaogang. His painting, 'forever love' was sold at 11 billion won."

"Is that true?"

"I really wanted to see the avant-garde art pamphlet. Lucky me."

After getting off the phone with President Jeong-Sook Shin, Gun-Ho fell into thought.

'One painting could be sold for 11 billion won... One can make huge enough money by selling one nice painting, which could change his life.'

Gun-Ho hadn't been very interested in art before he learned that there were paintings that could be sold for billions or tens of billions of won. Until then, Mr. Ding Feng's paintings were all the art he knew.

'If I can hold an art exhibition with the paintings that could be sold for 11 billion won, then how much commission can I have? I'm supposed to be enjoying art as they give me inspiration or some sort of emotional comfort or whatever. But I can't. All I can think of when I look at them is the business and the money that could be brought by selling a piece of art. I guess I can never be an artist. Min-Hyeok's mother was so excited when he bought her a condo that cost 200 million won. It was her first large home in her entire life, and she even danced in joy. With 11 billion won, she can buy 55 of them.'

Gun-Ho wanted to make sure that President Jeong-Sook Shin gave him accurate information. Maybe she was exaggerating a bit. Gun-Ho searched the artist's name, Zhang Xiaogang on the Internet. What President Shin told him was true.

Gun-Ho asked Ms. Seon-Hye Yee to mail the pamphlets to GH Media to President Shin, and he made a call to Director Kang,

"Was there anyone who showed interest in our basement space?"

"No, sir. I guess because the space is so large, it will take some time to rent it out."

"Do you remember how much rent the previous sauna business used to pay when they occupied the space?"

"They paid 10 million won per month with the security deposit of 100 million won. We currently put it on the market with a monthly rent of 5 million won and 50 million won for the security deposit. But no one hasn't come to take a look at it yet. Since the space had been used for a sauna business, if someone wants to run a restaurant there, they would have to redo the entire interior and that would cost a lot. So the potential tenants seem to be hesitant, I guess."

"Can you get a price quote for redoing the interior of that space for an art gallery business?"

"An art gallery, sir?"

"Right, a gallery where we can host an art exhibition."

"I'm not sure if the space is right for an art gallery. Well, I don't know much about that field. I will get a price quote and will let you know, sir."

Gun-Ho took a flight to Shanghai. He wanted to visit the avant-garde art exhibition that Seukang Li's pamphlet introduced even though he found the name was strange. These days, Gun-Ho always took either the first class or at least business class when he traveled abroad. He went straight to Shanghai without stopping by at his auto parts company in Suzhou City.

The Chinese avant-garde art exhibition was held at a contemporary art gallery located on Nanjing Road. Gun-Ho noticed that there were more people there than Mr. Ding Feng's art exhibition, also many of the visitors were young people.

"These paintings are creepy."

The paintings were really weird. One of the paintings depicted a human face, but the face line was twisted, and the person's eyes, mouth, and fingers were all out of place. The mouth was on one eye's place, and the mouth's place was occupied by a finger, and Gun-Ho couldn't figure out why. However, the overall vibe coming out of the painting was somewhat artistic.

"I don't know what the author's intention is, but I think there should be something that the painter tried to express."

Gun-Ho looked at the label placed under the painting. The author's name and the title of the painting were written.

"Desire of May?"

In the painting, there was the burning sun with a weird human face. The person's eyes were strange, but Gun-Ho could see a desire in them.

"If we display these paintings in a gallery in the basement of GH Building, would it be successful? These are so artistic that maybe a big exhibition hall such as Seoul Arts Center, Sejong Cultural Center, or the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art should handle. Should I still try it?"

Gun-Ho made a call to Seukang Li.

"Hey, it's me, Gun-Ho Goo. I am at the Chinese avant-garde art exhibition right now."

"Oh, really? I sent you the pamphlet a few days ago, and you are already here."

"Let's meet. I want to see you, friend."

"I have an important meeting that I have to attend right now. Let's meet after the meeting. I haven't even had lunch yet. We can meet at McDonald's which is located across the street from the exhibition hall. Let's have a hamburger."

"Hamburger? Sounds good. I wanted to have some food other than Chinese oily food today."

Gun-Ho was sitting at a table in McDonald's near the exhibition hall when Seukang Li ran into the fast-food restaurant. He was wearing a jacket.

"Hey, Seukang Li! Over here! I'm here."

"Oh, Gun-Ho Goo!"

"You seemed to be very busy today. I hope I'm not interrupting any of your work schedules."

"No, no. Don't worry about it. Today is a bit busier than other days, but I'm handling it fine. My current position requires a lot of work, as a matter of fact, because I have to handle the media and the press."