The Creations of Mansudae

My name is Daniel. I was an English teacher in Seoul, South Korea, and am now a writer who has
published three books including South Korea: Our Story by Daniel Nardini.
                        Just recently, the completed Angkor National Museum in Siem Reap Province, Cambodia, is a marvel on a vast scale. It features the most modern, the best quality, and the best architectural
aspects ever seen in Cambodia. It beautifully blends in Khmer architecture with the modern. In the country of Senegal, there is a magnificent statue called the African Renaissance Monument. Built of bronze and over 160 feet tall, it is a tribute to the end of European colonialism. In Namibia there is a huge war memorial, and in the Democratic of the Congo, a special statue of former rule Laurent Kabila was built in commemoration of his rule. In Syria, a special painted murals celebrating Syria’s “victory” over Israel was commissioned and completed. What do all of these things have in common? They are all the works of North Korea’s Mansudae Art Studio. Formed by former President Kim Il-sung in 1959, Mansudae Art Studio encompasses the best and most talented artists and architects in North Korea. In fact, the Mansudae Art Studio is one of the largest of its kind in the world. Mansudae Art Studio is the one that makes all of the statues, all of the North Korean propaganda artworks, and all of the murals in North Korea. Through its international division, the Mansudae Overseas Project, North Korea has been able to create artworks and statues and buildings in at least 18 countries. And these projects bring in very, very BIG money. The museum in Cambodia has brought in $24 million (note: the
North Korean regime will be able to keep all of the profits of the ticket sales and souvenirs sold in
the museum’s shop); the Senegal statue has brought in $27 million; and the Namibian war memorial
has brought in $60 million. In a nation heavily hit by world sanctions, the Mansudae Overseas Project
alone has brought in over $160 million in the past decade. This is among the ways the North Korean
regime utilizes to stay alive and in power.