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Daechung Park Cafe by Studio fnt

Opinion by Richard Baird

Graphic identity and coaster design by Studio fnt for South Korean cafe 대충유원지 Daechung Park

Daechung Park / 대충유원지 is a cafe located in the South Korean capital of Seoul. It features a distinctive interior of wood and stepped brick walls developed by FHHH Friends, furniture and objects by studio COM and a graphic identity designed Studio fnt. Graphic identity is expressed through menus, coasters, packaging and framed calligraphic posters, but also through small details within the interior and in the shaping of furniture.

Although Daechung translates as half-heartedness and has a kitschy Korean association the design of the cafe is not. It is a space with a clear purpose and mood, a place to unwind, to kick back and relax.

Each element; interior, furniture, objects, graphic identity and calligraphy establish a multi-disciplinary continuity and a shared form language. This draws its inspiration from architectural and digital landscapes but also from the other translation of Daechung, a word used in old Asia to describe tigers.

The literal translation of Daechung is (Dae, 大) big (Chung, 蟲) bug, a homonym made up of Chinese characters and an affectionate term for the tiger, an animal of cultural significance in Korea. These often appear as friendly characters in fables and folk paintings, and more recently as Olympic mascots. Here, the tiger reference appears as a character on coasters and posters, as stripes and patterns woven into the interior, or bringing a modernity to the traditional craft of calligraphy.

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