Tanchong (red-and-blue paint) is one of the cultural heritage elements created by the Korean nation.
In the past, mineral paint was used to prevent wooden buildings from decay by wind and rain and protect them from wood borers. And this paint has steadily developed into an element for architectural decoration.
There is a picture of tanchong on the murals of Susan-ri tomb dating back to Koguryo (277 BC-AD 668). This shows that the Korean people had long created and developed tanchong.
There are different kinds of tanchong such as pomtanchong which is simple in harmony of colours drawing only bold lines by combining black, blue and white colours, morutanchong which is not too simple or extravagant, kumtanchong whose patterns are elaborate and exquisite and which is gorgeous in colour, reminding the viewers of a decoration of silk with flower patterns.
The Ryongwang Pavilion in Pyongyang is famous for tanchong patterns.
Today, tanchong has been further polished in an artistic way, so it is used in decorating buildings of traditional architectural style.