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Public art on display in Anyang

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Published : 2014-03-25 20:45
Updated : 2014-03-26 10:03

Diverse art displays and programs will open to the public starting Friday in the city of Anyang, about 20 kilometers south of Seoul.

Held every three years and hosted by the Anyang Foundation for Culture and Arts, the 4th Anyang Public Art Project (APAP) will take place at the newly-built Kim Chung Up Museum, the refurbished Anyang Pavilion and Anyang Art Park.

As an internationally established public art event, the 4th APAP aims to reflect on the past decade of the project and explore solutions to issues surrounding public art.
“1SQMH” (1 Square Meter High) by French architect Didier Fiuza Faustino APAP
Rather than focusing on setting up new art displays, this year’s APAP has prioritized better management of and reusing existing art installations as well as rekindling the relationship between the public and the arts through fresh methods of enjoying a given artwork.

“Many artists and industry officials came together to figure out how best to make public and contemporary art ― often difficult to understand for most people ― meet,” said Baek Ji-suk, the Artistic Director of APAP at a press conference on Monday. “We tried to develop a program where public art can be appreciated different ways.”

Titled a “Public Story,” this year’s APAP features 24 new artworks spanning from sculptures, animation and movies, to installations and interactive displays by 27 local and foreign internationally-renowned artists.

One notable addition is a film that details an exploratory workshop titled “Deep Listening,” recently conducted by American musician Pauline Oliveros, who shared her art of listening with 28 local participants.

In the space where local Buddhist temple “Anyangsa” used to stand is a misty fog installation titled “Mu” ― which means both “fog” and “nonexistent” in Chinese characters ― by Fujiko Nakaya, a Japanese artist famous for working with fog as a sculptural medium.

Other works include a 3-D live sculpture titled “Face To Face” by American artist Anthony McCall. In a dark room, two screens facing each other shoot light beams toward the other through two projectors. Visitors can walk through these beams, which become visible through a light fog that fills the room.
The Park Library inside the Anyang Pavilion Lounge (APAP)
These art displays are all available for viewing at the Kim Chung Up Museum, which is a remodeled old factory formerly owned by local pharmaceutical company Yuyu Pharma, Inc. It was designed by the late, Pyongyang-born architect Kim Chung-up (1922-88), who also built the French Embassy here as well as the main buildings at Sogang and Konkuk universities among many others.

The factory, built by Kim back in 1959, has been purposely renovated in ways that preserve the building’s original design and structure. Everything from the cement floor to the smaller doors and wall structures remain untouched, in line with APAP’s mantra of creating new art by reusing existing works.

Spread out over six buildings, the museum showcases various artworks by diverse APAP artists as well as interactive exhibits that display Kim’s blueprints, sketches and notes as well as historical artifacts from "Anyangsa."

Located near the museum is the refurbished Anyang Pavilion, designed by Portuguese architect Alvaro Siza Vieira, which features a new art library equipped with resources and books related to public art. The space is a creative artwork in itself, for the shelves, chairs, desks and the sitting area are all made out of cardboard. Next to the library is a “Making Lab” where professional technicians assist visitors in their own crafts.

Another steady highlight of the APAP is the Anyang Art Park’s forest trails where about 50 larger, outdoor art installations can be found. For this year’s APAP, some of these artworks were taken down, relocated or refurbished, after careful discussion between the artists and related officials, in line with APAP’s new focus.

Visitors walking through the park can access detailed and informative commentary on the public artworks via a newly-launched APAP mobile application, which can be downloaded on both Android and iOS devices for free. A 90-minute guided tour of the outdoor artworks is also available upon reservation for 1,000 won.

“I hope that visitors will become more interested in public art through APAP and that the program will develop into a cultural festival for not just artists but the public,” said Roh Jae-cheon, the president of APAP.

The 4th APAP will run for approximately two months from March 28 to June 8 in Anyang, Gyeonggi Province. For more information, visit apap.or.kr.

By Sohn Ji-young (jiyoung.sohn@heraldcorp.com)

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