I saw the following artwork at the National Hangul Museum (국립한글박물관) in Seoul. I know it's some kind of pun or play on the words or grammar, but I'm not getting it. I know that 파리 can either be "fly" or "Paris", but I'm not understanding what the artist is trying to convey with the non-standard word order and use of quotation marks. Can someone explain this artwork?

Artwork: 파리를 사랑하세요?[1]

파리를 사랑하세요? Do you love Fly/Paris?

By 박연주 Park Yeoun-joo

  • 1
    you know, if you stare at it long enough, it almost says, "♪파리랑 파리랑 파라리요♫" May 1, 2017 at 22:54
  • If you defocus it sort of works like one of those magic eye things! May 2, 2017 at 21:41

2 Answers 2


This much I can say about it: Block A (top left) is the only whole sentence. The other blocks are various fragments of A. Each vertical pairing (e.g. B1 and B2) can be turned into the same whole sentence as in A by putting the bottom one (B2) on top of the top one (B1).

I don't know that the thing was worth thinking this much about.

Maybe it was obvious to everyone already.

enter image description here

  • Do any of the rearrangements make grammatical sense in Korean apart from 'A'? May 9, 2017 at 7:37
  • @topomorto I don't think so.
    – Catomic
    May 10, 2017 at 2:13

My Korean wife says, "The artist is just stupid. That's not art." In defense of the artist, my wife says my ideas are stupid, too; so that's probably 3 parts her, only 1 part us :)

What I think is that perhaps the artist has simply always been enamored with the phrase, and in wanting to turn the phrase into art thought that, in the way that a house-fly zips here and there, having the parts of the phrase zip here and there in a seemingly meaningless fashion would be interesting.

Or perhaps if you stand far enough from the piece and blur your eyes just right you can see the Eiffel Tower.

...아니면 우리 와이프가 맞았나봐

  • 1
    Your wife might just be right, but I'd hope there's some deeper meaning if this artwork made it into a national museum. May 2, 2017 at 3:27

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