[Korean Culture Series 6] Maedeup: The Art of Traditional Korean Knots


Kim Hee-jin


Culture & General Information



Publication Date



19 x 24cm (full color / soft cover) / E-Book


19,800 KRW






Maedeup is a language of the hands, a flower of the heart. It was like a kind of wings for Korean culture, leading the Korean spirit into flight, like the wings of the bats adorning a Joseon nobleman’s coat, and the wings of butterflies and phoenixes that decorate silver daggers. This book introduces the history of maedeup, its uses, and the making of maedeup, through detailed explanation and illustrations.

매듭은 손끝으로 표현하는 언어이자 마음의 꽃망울이다. 매듭은 한국인들의 정신을 비상하게 하는 한국 문화의 날개이다. 조선시대 양반들의 도포자락을 장식한 박쥐의 날개나 은장도 끝에 매달던 나비 또는 봉황의 날개처럼 말이다. 이 책에서는 매듭의 역사, 활용 및 만드는 방법 등이 상세한 설명과 일러스트레이션과 함께 설명되어 있다.

Softcover(9781565912335)는 품절입니다.


1. Introduction

2. History of Maedeup

3. Maedeup and Its Uses
1) Trappings of Authority
2) Musical Instruments
3) Buddhist Art
4) Ornaments for Women
5) Ornaments for Men
6) Other Decorations

4. The Making of Maedeup
1) Dyeing
2) Dahoe (Cord)
3) Maedeup (Knots)
4) Sul (Tassels)

5. Conclusion

I. Contemporary Maedeup
II. Basic Knots and Their Uses


Kim Hee-jin 김희진
Kim Hee-jin was born in 1934 and attended Jin Myeong Girls’ High School in 1946. It was in 1963 that she first developed an interest in traditional ornamental knots, maedeup, which in the aftermath of devastating social turmoil in the first half of the 20th century, was quickly becoming a dyeing art. Kim embarked on a quest to learn the techniques of creating traditional maedeup and dahoe, or knots and cords, from the last surviving artisans of the craft. After studying the various techniques with the masters, Kim organized and developed them into the art of Korean traditional ornamental knot-making, known as maedeup.
In 1973 Kim founded the Kim Hee-jin Traditional Craft Institute where she began to offer individual classes in maedeup, and in 1976 she was designated a master in the field of maedeup, a state-designated Important Intangible Cultural Asset. In 1979, she founded, along with her students, the Korea Maedeup Research Institute to help train and nurture a new generation of maedeup artists.
In 1984, on the occasion of Pope John Paul II’s visit to Korea for the bicentennial of the Catholic Church in Korea and the canonization of 103 Korean saints, Kim contributed her first maedeup rendition of a cross to be used in the ceremonies.
Kim Hee-Jin has held nine solo exhibitions and participated in 22 group shows as a member of the Korea maedeup Research Institute, both in Korea and abroad. In September 2004, she held a retrospective at the National Museum of Korea titled “Aesthetics of Balance and Symmetry-maedeup, Korean Traditional Knots,” which brought together her own creations from the past four decades, along with her extensive collection of antique maedeup. This show was organized in conjunction with the International Council of Museums 2004 held in Seoul on the theme “Museums and Intangible Heritage.” Kim donated the entire contents of the exhibition to the museum.
Kim is the author of maedeup and Dahoe (Gwangmyeong Publishing, 1974), Traditional Korean maedeup (Gwangmyeong Publishing, 1979) and Have Fun with maedeup (Jungwoo-sa, 2002).