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Meet the Team: Eunju Yi, Executive Director

Updated: Jan 18

Eunju Yi is a dedicated arts administrator, inspiring arts educator & public speaker and creative storyteller.


Meet Eunju Yi


Eunju Yi (Post Graduate Diploma in Arts Management (UWO), BA in Theatre (Kyungsung University)) is a strategic arts manager and inspiring public speaker, serving as Executive Director of the London Arts Council (LAC) since 2021 and a board member of the RBC Place London (London Convention Centre) since 2022. Her extensive experience as an artist, arts educator, and arts manager in Korea and Canada contributes to her unwavering support of the arts and culture internationally.


Since she joined the team in 2012, Yi has contributed to the LAC in various areas, such as public art, arts education, arts programs, fund development, fund allocation, special projects, diversity & inclusion, and truth & reconciliation, before obtaining the position of Executive Director after a national search process conducted by the LAC board.


As the Executive Director, Yi manages the organization’s day-to-day operations and program areas, supports the organization’s governance function through quarterly meetings and reports to the board, initiates high-profile business proposals, and maintains key partnerships by working closely with the City of London Culture Services, and the LAC’s team of six professional Arts Administrators with diverse artistic and cultural backgrounds.


Yi represents the organization on local, provincial, and national occasions through professional networks and meetings, as well as various speaking engagements, such as the National Liberation Day of Korea Official Ceremony (2012-2023), Beginning (2022, national conversations for disability art), London Chamber of Commerce Annual Summit (2022), London UNESCO City of Music Conference (2023), London UNESCO City of Music Expo (2023), and many other occasions, as a guest speaker, a panelist, or an emcee.


Yi has a strong sense of connection to her Korean culture and history, and her genuine interest and curiosity in international cultural heritage and history are her main sources of inspiration for her creativity and artistic expressions.


Her broad spectrum of interests includes, but is not limited to, cultural planning, cultural policy development, international and national practices of the arts, and the roles and functions of intergovernmental organizations.


 

Ask Me Anything - with Eunju Yi


What is your artistic background?


I studied theatre for my undergraduate program at Kyungsung University in Busan, South Korea. I participated in a number of diverse theatre projects as an actor, play writer, director, production manager, lighting, sound crew, etc. Each project taught me great life lessons, helped me to broaden/deepen my perspectives and gain new insight, led me to push my boundaries/comfort zone, and made me further explore, experience, and learn. Through theatre, I found my language and vocabulary to communicate with the world. I was able to keep my balance between my ideology and reality and discover many ways to reconnect with myself for meaningful self-reflection.



What do you think are the best skills that you bring to your job?


Intuition. Intuition helps me to collect vast amounts of information about people, situations, etc. in a very short time, which helps me to make sharp and sound judgements and come up with working strategies.



What do you want to make sure you do before you die?


I want to live in an old castle in a European country with my family and surround myself with antique furniture, objects, artworks, music (including musical instruments), and books. Thinking about historical items that contain hundreds of years of stories about space, era, and people is fascinating. I will enjoy breathing in and living in the space that is filled with stories.



Name some favourite films/albums/work of arts/pieces of literature:


I love Surrealist artists and their work. Especially, Salvador Dali’s Illustrations for the Bible and Alice in Wonderland as well as Remedios Varo’s ‘The Call’.


I like Bong Joon-ho’s films, especially Parasite and Mother and Lee Chang-dong’s Peppermint Candy. I also like Jane Campion’s films. The Piano and her recent film The Power of the Dog are my favourites of her work. Also, Studio Ghibli’s animated films, such as Princess Mononoke, Spirted Away, Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind, Whispers of the Heart, Howl’s Moving Castle, etc. are my most cherished films. I’ve watched each of them at least 5-10 times if not more. Each work contains timeless messages that give me new insight and wisdom every time I watch. Jean-Pierre Jaunet’s Amélie, Naoko Ogigami’s slow movie Glasses, and Satoshi Miki’s Turtles Are Surprisingly Fast Swimmers are also my all-time favourites.



What are you happiest doing, when you’re not working?


1) Baking and Gardening with my kids

2) Scribble painting while listening to music

3) Watching era-based movies or photo images of antique furniture and objects

4) Thinking about new stories and perfecting every single factor of each sequence in my mind



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