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The Country That Cannot Be Reached
The July issue of GQ Korea was a summer-special feature, where they commissioned six designers, including myself, to each contribute a surfboard design. I was also asked to write a short comment on where I want to ride this surfboard (including a place that's impossible to travel to), including the design intent. I came up with a phrase, inspired from the Korean version of the title of Christophe Bataille’s novel, Annam, which is ‘The Country That Cannot Be Reached’.

“The Captain offered a round of rum; no one refused, not even the long-haired nuns. Drunk, the captain talked all night long. France believed the ship was lost, carrying cargoes and men. A mass was said in the Royal chapel for those engaged in the expedition.”
The face of a tiki mask is truly mysterious, as it seems to be wearing a big smile, but also angry, and at times, sad. At a Polynesian/Hawaii-themed Southern style bar, they serve you cocktails in glasses that have tiki mask illustrated on them. I think of ‘a country that cannot be reached’, as I stare into the night of Seoul, looking at the rough wooden cup that resembles my mood. There are places you simply cannot reach with merely a plane ticket and accommodation.

  • Design: Jaemin Lee

  • Client: GQ Korea
  • Year: July 2019

© Jaemin Lee. All rights reserved.