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Pioneering Korean designer André Kim, 74, dies


August 13, 2010/13.16

André Kim, 74, one of South Korea’s greatest fashion names, died Thursday night, his son Kim Joong-Do announced earlier today.
   André Kim was being treated for pneumonia at Seoul National University Hospital.
   He was admitted to hospital last month, and was also being treated for his earlier colorectral cancer.
   Kim was less than two weeks away from celebrating his 75th birthday.
   President Lee Myung-Bak said that Kim would be awarded the Medal of the Golden Crown for his contribution to culture.
   In an official message, as translated by the Korea Times, he said, ‘Through his world-class fashion designs, André Kim spread Korean culture and art to the rest of the world. He received love and respect from many citizens for his continual donations and volunteer work. I send my deepest condolences to the bereaved family and pray that André Kim will rest in peace.’
   Celebrities including Kim Hee-sun, with whom he collaborated for many years, Cha In-pyo, Choi Ji-woo, Kim Joon and Ryu Si-won paid tributes to the designer.
   He was the first prominent male South Korean fashion designer, and entered the industry in Seoul in 1962. He also showed in Paris in the 1960s.
   As one of South Korea’s best known names in fashion, he was commissioned to design the country’s Olympic uniforms on some occasions.
   He was presented with the Presidential Culture and Art Medal by the South Korean government in 1977.
   His last show was in Beijing earlier this year.
   Kim is survived only by his son. The funeral service will take place on Sunday. Kim will be interred at the Cheonan Memorial Park in Gyeonggi-do.

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