The term ‘Totatoga’ is composed of ‘TO’ from ‘Tolerance’ in French. It bears the meaning of toleration, consideration of cultural diversity. The meaning of ‘TATO’ is that artists and citizens are living and sharing both respectively and together. (It is called “따로또같이 [Taro Togattchi]” in Korean) And ‘GA(街)’ is a Chinese character. The meaning is that we share the culture of daily life centering around an open space, e.g. the street. That is how we composed the name of our project, brought into Korean letters

The Historical Downtown Culture Cluster Totatoga has been supporting ateliers in former vacant houses and buildings full of modern and contemporary history since 2010. It made the Renaissance of this Historic Downtown Culture possible by utilizing unused spaces as culture creation space. 

A cooperative subcultural project for artists and residents of Busan’s city wards Jungang-Dong and Donggwang-Dong. It was initiated to reactivate the discussion about the idealistic value of this historic neighborhood, fueled by public exhibitions, readings, (international) workshops and panels, street festivals, and performances. 

The project covers all genres: literature, theater, dance, and music as well as movie making and fine art, so that the exchange between residents and artists led to the reanimation of an almost bled dry quarter by establishing a sense for local identity.

Contents of Activities

  • management of art culture education programs and cultural activities
  • Solidarity with landlord and community for building the foundation of long-term activity 
  • Networking with local organizations and cultural organizations

Main Activities

  • Daily life culture planning through Arts and culture Festivals, Street performances, street art markets, etc.
  • Developing civic cultural art education programs and running classes
  • Culture activities and life culture planning for a culturally neglected class of people such as alley projects, campaigns for employees, etc..
  • Community activities and cooperation between artists and citizens, artist and artist
  • Presentation of creative activities, exhibitions, performances, publications, and shows by artists in residence
  • Internal and external exchange of culture by e.g. creating a space network and the WATAGATA Arts Festival, Busan-Hamburg international exchanging project “HAMONIM”.

Status of project 

Duration of Project: 1st project phase: 2010-2012, 2nd phase: 2013-2015, 3rd and current phase: 2016-2018, 4thphase: 2019-2021

Project Scale: 26 places and 80 rooms

Members: 43 individual artists, 24 collectives (all in all 223 people)

Main Agent: Busan Metropolitan City, Busan Cultural Foundation

Supervision: The Artist Cooperative Chang