This week we spoke with Rosa Park, Editor in Chief of Cereal and Director of Francis Gallery. Because Cereal is known for its refined aesthetic and keen editorial sensibility, we were curious to know what possession Rosa would place in her so-called 'Permanent Collection'.
Rosa Park: My 'Permanent Collection' object is an antique Korean silver vessel, which was a part of my grandfather’s collection.
Permanent Collection: Why did you select it? What makes it special to you?
R.P.: I chose it because the vessel represents my Korean heritage, my family, and my love of art. My grandfather was an avid collector of Korean paintings and arts & crafts, and after he passed away, his collection was dispersed amongst family members. One of the objects that was passed on to my father is a bijou, a silver vessel from the early 1900's — it looks like a small vase or carafe. Growing up, I always saw it at my grandpa’s, then later on, at my parents', but I never knew where it came from or what it symbolized.
P.C.: Did you ever learn more about its story and provenance?
R.P.: Last year, I was in Seoul doing research on Korean art ahead of launching Francis Gallery — because a part of the gallery’s mission is to promote Korean arts & crafts — and I came across a selection of silver vessels on display at The National Museum of Korea, which were fabricated by Lee Wang Jik Art Factory, a workshop set up by the last emperor of Korea to produce objects that merged Korean design with increasing Western influence.
My dad had accompanied me to the museum, and that’s when he explained that the antique silver vessel at home was from this same workshop. Every piece from this workshop was inscribed with a Chinese character that means ‘beauty' on the bottom, and most of the pieces were also engraved with a plum flower, a significant symbol that represents perseverance and hope. After the museum visit, my dad gifted me the vessel and said it felt like the right time to pass it on to me. He wanted me to remember the value of perseverance as I embark on a new chapter of my professional career, and also wanted me to have an important Korean piece as part of my collection, with Francis Gallery in mind.
P.C.: Tell us about your current obsession...
R.P.: I recently finished The Miracle Morning in a bid to become a morning person — I’m the epitome of a night owl — and I’m currently obsessed with rising early.
It’s too soon to tell whether or not I can stick with this new habit long term, but I feel positive about it. I’m on day 10 of waking up at 6am, and getting into work by 7am. I’m astonished at how productive 7am to 9am can be, when most people aren’t at their desks yet, and you can work with minimal interruptions and get a head start on the day ahead.