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Middle East Enthralled by Hanbok… “K-Culture Festival Dubai” Opens


The inauguration of the “K-Culture Festival Dubai 2024”, organized by the World Start-up Forum, on April 12th heralded a convergence of Korean fashion with cutting-edge technologies such as artificial intelligence and blockchain in Dubai, the financial hub of the Middle East. Held at the Arjaan Rotana Hotel in Media City, the event drew a notable presence of local dignitaries, including Sheikha Maryam Dubai Princess, alongside prominent figures from Dubai's cultural and business circles, all expressing keen interest in the fusion of artificial intelligence and fashion through K-culture.

The first day featured a captivating K-fashion show themed around Hanbok (traditional Korean dress). Directed by Paris-based fashion designer Eunjoo Hong, the runway showcased fashion pieces that harmonized Eastern and Western influences, drawing enthusiastic applause from the audience with each ensemble.

In particular, Yiseul Hwang, the designer behind Yiseul Hanbok, earned acclaim from participating models for her adaptation of Hanbok, tailored to resonate with the clothing culture and traditional attire preferences of Middle Easterners. Expressing her aspirations, Hwang remarked, "Building on the K-culture wave, I envision Hanbok finding resonance in the lives of Middle Easterners."

The event also attracted attention with the presence of Kamimura Shaki, Vice Chairman of the Japan Translation Association and an artificial intelligence consultant for Japanese firms. Vice Chairman Shaki underscored his interest in B2B platforms that integrate Korea's distinctive fashion with artificial intelligence and blockchain.

Looking ahead to the 'K-Startup Business Day' on the 13th, discussions will delve into the development of platforms leveraging AI and blockchain in conjunction with fashion. Korean startup entrepreneurs will engage in meetings with Dubai investors to explore avenues for technical collaboration and receive practical investment advice.

Taesoo Jeon, representing the World Startup Forum, outlined plans to launch a business platform integrating artificial intelligence and blockchain technology into Korean fashion, thereby fostering opportunities for individual designers. He emphasized that the platform would not only facilitate collaboration among designers but also serve as a collaborative hub where influencers and investors converge to nurture creative works and business models. Highlighting the importance of blockchain technology in ensuring equitable distribution, Jeon envisioned it as a catalyst for the Web 3.0 era, where contributions are duly recognized and rewarded.

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