Being part of the art

By Lee Woo-young

Established, up-and-coming artists engage audiences in ‘Spectrum-Spectrum’ exhibition

  • Published : Jul 28, 2014 - 20:42
  • Updated : Jul 28, 2014 - 20:42
Artist Oh In-hwan asked a security guard at the Samsung Museum of Art, Plateau, to become part of his art project for the museum’s then upcoming exhibition.

His project was to build a personal relationship with him, document when they hang out and present the final proof of their friendship ― dancing together at the exhibition opening. After the guard finished work, they went for dinner and drinks. As they got closer, they even went hiking together.

But they never got to the level of dancing together as the security guard refused to continue the project. Oh has gone ahead and presented the incomplete project in the form of an installation, with a few panels missing that were supposed to show records of their meetings at the “Spectrum-Spectrum” exhibition.
“Distant Rhythm” by Jung Ji-hyun (Plateau)

Artists participating in the Plateau’s new exhibition engage with others, mostly other artists. Artists previously selected by the museum for an annual young artist exhibition, “Art Spectrum,” were asked to choose another artist. The artist pairings showcase creative, wide-ranging new practices of contemporary art in Korea.

Artist Lee Mee-hye, invited by Oh, purchased replicas of Rodin’s “The Thinker” sculpture at the museum shop and melted them to turn them into nails. She used the nails to write “Upcycling” ― a word that indicates for her a changing interpretation of art ― on a white wall.

Artist Kim Beom, whose huge maze painting occupies one side of the white wall, exchanged letters with Kiljong Arcade, a design agency of three artists. The two works are not on exhibit side by side, because this might have confused viewers, who would have tried to make a connection between them. Kim’s painting deals with the use of art as a pure, complicated form and Kiljong Arcade presents a practical example of how art can be used as part of home interior design or architecture.

“It’s a matter of where they are displayed that defines whether they are art or products,” said Ahn So-yeon, deputy director of Plateau, during the press preview last week. 

Artists Lee Hyung-koo, 45, and Jung Ji-hyun, 28, present an interesting take on the use of the museum lobby. Lee conducts a horse performance wearing a special device he designed to help a human run like a horse. The five-minute video shows the artist wearing the steel device and running around the museum lobby like a horse. The horse tail attached to the back of the device adds humor to the performance. 
“Measure” by Lee Hyung-koo. (Plateau)

Small pieces of paper fall from another device made by artist Jung Ji-hyun. The device drops the papers embossed with the ambiguous phrase “Not to forget the commitment between light and gravity.”

Another device hangs in the air equipped with 12 electricity meters that show the time of death and birth in six of the world’s continents. Inspired by the electricity meter on the walls of apartment complexes, the artist said the device quantifies the speed of people’s lives.

The exhibition continues through Oct. 12 at the Samsung Museum of Art, Plateau. Admission is 3,000 won for adults and 2,000 for teenagers. For more information, visit www.plateau.or.kr.

By Lee Woo-young (wylee@heraldcorp.com)