Sungeun Kim

Department: Information Design

Treasure Island

What: How commercial branding is used to stake a territorial claim on Dokdo Island, which is at the heart of a long-running dispute between South Korea and Japan.
Why: From cookies, to cosmetics, to instant noodles, the iconic rocky peak of Dokdo Island is a common sight on South Korean packaging. It’s a form of marketing to feed patriotic feeling about the island that Japan considers theirs.

How: SungEun Kim investigates a range of Dokdo-branded products and discovered that few, if any, of the ingredients used actually come from the island, or even from South Korea. The island has become an empty nationalistic symbol that is part of a complex geopolitical reality.

“These products reflect a complex story of nationalism”

Copyright Design Academy Eindhoven

Copyright: Design Academy Eindhoven
Photographs: Iris Rijskamp