KIWA India in collaboration with Rockin Korea brought India’s first online Webtoon exhibition! The event was held online on 22-23 October 2020. Four popular webtoon artists interacted with fans and made sketches in real-time over a period of two days. Popular webtoon artists – Jimmy (Exchanged Heart), E.Hae (Not So Bad), Baek Sang Eun (The Prince of Thorn Castle) and Noh Myoung Hee (The Crush in Spring) were the guests for the event. Ms. Seung Hee was the interpreter for the event. Fans from all over India were asked to send their sketches or drawings on the theme ‘My City’.

They received 150 entries from all over India. The response was so huge that after a point, they had to stop accepting the entries! Most entries were from the east of India – West Bengal, Nagaland, Odisha and Assam. All e-copies were sent to the webtoon artists in South Korea who selected the winners themselves! The winners got a chance to talk to the webtoon artists, get their autographs and get tooned.

 

Source: KIWA India

 

What does ‘getting tooned’ mean exactly?

The webtoon artist draws a webtoon sketch of the winner in real-time!

They look at the winner and draw their sketch! There are no retakes. There were some random picks during the session as well! Dr. Lim Eun Joo and Mr. Sanjiv had some fun activities planned for the random picks! Participants were asked to sing a song of their choice or answer a quick quiz. On Day 2 of the event, all participants were dressed in traditional clothes. As the event was held during the Navratri festival, the festive spirit was evident in the participants! The webtoon artists expressed their interest to visit India and base some characters or stories on Indian cities and mythology.

KIWA India had extended an invite to KHIGH as well. I even got tooned! Want to see my ‘tooned’ avatar? Can you spot which session I was tooned in?

Webtoon artist E.Hae (wearing yellow glasses) and my ‘tooned’ avatar

 

Before the start of the event, Ms. Jimmy also showed how they draw a webtoon character. The two-day event saw a footfall of 60-80 participants each day. The event was live-streamed on Rockin Korea’s YouTube channel as well. You can watch it here:

Day 1 –

Day 2 –

Can you name each state according to the traditional attire worn by the participants? I’ll give one hint: look for Seven Sisters of India 😉

 

In the past, KIWA India has brought in K-Pop groups such as VAV, Yubin and MustB to India. Earlier in 2020, they also launched AASHA – an online platform to teach Korean to the fans of K-Pop and Korean culture.

Speaking on the idea behind this event, Mr. Sanjiv of KIWA India says,

“We had this idea for about a year now. We had planned to host a physical exhibition but due to the pandemic, we had to make changes in our plan. But thankfully, we could manage to hold the event online. We hope we can host more events in India. We want people in India to know more about the Korean Culture and the Hallyu wave.”

KIWA India

Adding about the history of KIWA India, CEO Dr. Lim Eun Joo adds,

“We have a small team in Seoul. We work for many govt projects in Korea. There are two companies, one parent company – Kiwa Pvt. Ltd. which is working with Korean companies and projects since 2009. Later, when entertainment projects came our way, we opened up Kiwa Enterprises. So the entire network of Korean companies actually belongs to the Kiwa Pvt. Ltd. and they shift the Hallyu projects to Kiwa Enterprises.”

 

Commenting further on the idea of the event, Dr. Lim Eun Joo adds, “We knew that many fans in India watch K-Dramas. As several dramas are also adapted from webtoons, we were sure that the event will click with the fans.”

KIWA India has also received a sanction to set up King Sejong Institute in Pune. King Sejong Institute is an institution in India and worldwide, which is one of the pioneers for the spread of the Korean language and culture.

Thanks to CEO Dr. Kim Eun Joo and Mr. Sanjiv of KIWA India and CEO Lee Hwa Shin of Rockin Korea for hosting such an amazing webtoon event. We look forward to more such events happening in India!

Written by

Nandini Iyengar

An aspiring translator and a writer!