The Playground is divided into five parts; Media Oasis, which offers comfortable benches to sit on and relax, is where media art exhibitions are exhibited and music videos are screened. This service is free, and is open to the public from 11:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. The Vital Theater is where hard-to-get experimental movies are screened for a small admission fee. It can also be reserved for private seminars or social gatherings.
The most popular place at the Playground is the Video Viewing Room. There, people can watch independent films, documentaries, animations, video arts, and commercial films. Viewing costs 1,000 won for 30 minutes and 500 won for every additional 30 minutes. Another popular area is the Visual Lab, which offers materials and instructions for film editing for 3,000 won per hour. It is open to anyone who wants to express their thoughts in film but does not know what to do first. To use the Lab a reservation is required. Finally, Club Vitality is a free library stocked with the latest issues of cultural magazines from Korea and abroad.
The C.I.P. is now loved by many citizens with lots of active members (50 visitors per day during weekdays and 70~80 visitors per day during weekends).
"I first came here to do my "Understanding Motion Pictures" homework. Since then, I come here time to time with friends to enjoy various services. I think this is a great place to watch interesting films and relax." says Jung Jin-ee (Sungkyunkwan U.,1).
However, for this place to open, it was not easy from the beginning. Seoul"s Culture Affairs Bureau was very much involved in the planning and the construction of C.I.P. in April 2001 when the idea was first brought up. But they had no idea of how much work and money will be needed constantly. After the construction they unilaterally said that there was no more budget for the C.I.P. and tried to leave all the responsibility to The Seoul Metropolitan Subway Corporation. To make things worse, The Seoul Metropolitan Subway Corporation said that they would not allow the C.I.P. to open in the subway station.
The C.I.P. could have been left barehanded, but people from The Association of Korean Independent Art & Film did not give up and constantly tried to discuss the matter with Seoul City and The Seoul Metropolitan Subway Corporation. After three months of discussions and with the help from many people who love media art and the Association of Korean Independent Art & Film, the C.I.P. opened its doors to the citizens in November 30, 2002.
"I just hope that more people would come and visit the place. There are still many people who just walk by, and glance inside with curiosity on their faces. The C.I.P. should be a place where everyone feels easy to come in. We are planning to put up lost of signs explaining about the place so it would be easier to enter." says Moon Duk-Ja, a staff at the C.I.P.
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