Heart & Seoul

In the heart of Seoul is a small district named Euljiro. Passing through you might not grasp the size of its network of alleyways and back passages. These long and winding paths are roughly home to 10,000 shops and over 50,000 tradespeople, working in the area. The sheer variety of stores and workshops on offer is staggering, selling anything from cement to CCTV systems and creating anything from screws to steel sheets. The saying goes, you could build a tank in Euljiro, such is the variety of skills on offer.

The area was born after the Korean war ended in 1953. Hastily cobbled together using rebar and concrete and speedily erected with little planning or permissions. The idea was that it would help build up the city of Seoul, it’s the area that helped Seoul become what it is today. Sadly, modern Seoul now wants it’s prime central real estate back, to turn into apartments and more shopping areas.

The workers are worried, some have been working there since Euljiro’s workshops were first built, they don’t want to lose their workshops, their livelihoods and their community.

The area is utterly unique, the bustling alleyways, the shouts of orders and phones ringing off the hook, the smell of the machines and beeps from the motorbikes. It’s an incredible place, full of skilled people and textures that only an area like this could have. In the words of one of the workers I met, it would be their eternal sadness if the area was demolished.

Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>한영철</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>이우환</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>고정민</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>이태순</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>이태순</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>Workshops closed for the day</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>김미재</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>박수현</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>김형구</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>정주연</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>한진호</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>황중균</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>반공한</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>Mr Kim</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>Fancy a drink</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>A church</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>Shutters</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>Alleyways</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>Euljiro from above</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>Euljiro from above</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>Euljiro from above</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>정경호</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>Watch spares</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>Jonghyun’s tools</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>박종현</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>박종현</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>김종식</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>김현순</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>Jeongyeol Choi’s phone & tools</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>최정열</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>김태웅</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>김광오</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>Tools</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>김정수</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>euljiro-seoul-artisan-workshops_00004</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>정기숙</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>이우돈</strong>
Tom Barnes <a href='https://www.tombarnes.com/projects/seoul/' class='ptitle'><u>Full Project</u></a> <strong>Woodon Lee’s workshop drawers</strong>