Pages Navigation Menu

Everything You Need to Know About Ulsan

Independant Culture in Ulsan

Independant Culture in Ulsan

By Philip Brett

Ulsan is an industrial city. This has not changed. In 2012 I was informed that the only things to do here were drinking and shopping. That has certainly changed over the last few years. Whether you’re new to the city or just looking for something new to do about town, here’s a (in no way comprehensive) list of options. Go support your local scene, or better yet – get involved. Make music, organise a show, or help out with something already running.


Digit @ Sticky Fingers  (Samsan)

Monthly live music events. The entrance fee of 5000won covers transportation and accommodation costs for the bands who have travelled from Seoul, Busan, Daegu, and other cities around the country.

Cypher Rooftop Poetry Show (Samsan)

Hosted by Canadian spoken word poet Sean O’Gorman, this is another monthly night that happens at Cima’s. Regularly featuring guest poets from around the country, there’s also an open mic each month. All open mic performers get a free shot.

Open Mic @ Sticky Fingers (Samsan)

Every Thursday the stage is open to anyone who wants to perform. Guitar, piano and drums are already in place. Play a solo set, jam with friends or strangers, or make your own band to join the ever-growing local scene. Also check out the movie night and trivia night held weekly.


Ium Art Space  (Nam-gu)

Beside the Ulsan Arts & Culture Center you can find this small gallery which brings some incredible artists to show in Ulsan. The owner speaks some English, and is incredibly welcoming. The gallery also hosts a monthly movie night.


Dongsan (Dong-gu)

An open culture space that welcomes anyone interested in art, movies, etc..Holds exhibitions to showcase the work created by members. Very welcoming, and right across from Pub HQ.


The Royal Anchor (Seongnam)

Hosts live music every Wednesday and Saturday. Mr Kim also organises all the live music (busking) on Culture Street every Saturday and Sunday. Fantastic selection of whiskey and vinyl records that can be played on request.

image05The New Middle Class (Seongnam)

A collaborative community space in Seongnam that’s open to members. It hosts art classes, movie nights, flea markets, and other culture-focused events. Run by a group of young Koreans that includes one of the best installation / performance artists in the south of the country.



Moim (Seongnam)

Another space in Seongnam, but open to the public. Primarily a gallery but the space can be used in many ways, including movie events, music performances, etc.. Always open to new ideas and collaboration, and connected to I’m Gourmet to combine a meal and art in one go. Collaborates with Angle Magazine to create the Movies & Wine event that takes place once a month.


M Theater (Seongnam)

A multi-purpose venue that primarily holds music events, as well as a mixture of other performances. Underneath (and connected to) Cafe 36.5 which also has occasional art exhibitions. Live music shows are quiet, seated and alcohol free.

(Korean skills / translator required)


Jjan Jjan (Seongnam)

Offers classes in various art forms including screen printing.

(Korean skills / translator required)

Under Where? (Seongnam)

A group of young students (some still in high school) who create events around the city, including flea markets and small parties. A number of events were connected to the street culture fashion store D.A.M.P. (Don’t Ask My Plan – which is the place to go for any skaters in the city. There’s a small half pipe in the store.)

Underwood. (Mugeodong)

Another addition to the young community spaces popping up around the city. Combines exhibitions, performances and a clothes shop in one.

(Korean skills / translator required)


Unplugged House (Mugeodong)

A small music space in the basement of a building in Mugeo. Focuses mostly on acoustic performances, also available to rent for theater performance or practice rooms.

(Korean skills / translator required)

There are also a number of cafes in Seongnam who display small exhibitions of art on a regular basis. Explore the area for more, but Da Lak and Oazo are good places to start. The former also has an upright piano and acoustic guitar that you can play.

Finally, for photographers, check out the Ulsan Photo Club

Philip works endlessly promoting the indie music scene through DIGIT or the art scene through Angle Magazine. You can probably find him at the local galleries or anywhere live music is playing