The Korea Herald


Jun So-jung transcends borders, time, space at Barakat Contemporary

By Park Yuna

Published : Nov. 10, 2023 - 01:23

    • Link copied

An installation view of three-channel video An installation view of three-channel video "Overtone" at Barakat Contemporary in Seoul (Courtesy of the gallery)

Artist Jun So-jung engages in many different art genres from sculptures, sound to digital art, transcending time and borders. At Barakat Contemporary in Seoul where her solo exhibition is being held through Jan. 4, 2024, the artist crosses seamlessly between the virtual world and reality.

The exhibition “Overtone,” the artist’s first solo show at the gallery, features her new three-channel video that documents the journey of Park Soon-a, a Korean Japanese gayageum player who has traveled South and North Korea trekking sound.

The 80-minute work, also titled “Overtone,” shows three performers and three composers, including Park, communicating in different places to create music with the Korean 12-string zither called gayageum, Japanese koto and Chinese guzheng under the theme “Crossing Borders.”

"Park plays North Korean gayageum, which is different from South Korean gayageum. The North Korean gayageum is known to be influenced by a Russian instrument as they share a border. This was quite interesting to me, how instruments reflect their history," Jun said at the exhibition opening on Tuesday.

"As a young artist who has not experienced the war between the two countries, I often think about how I can touch on the issue through art," she added.

A series of sculptures entitled “Epiphyllum I” and “Epiphyllum III” are on display at the gallery’s first floor. Epiphyllum, a plant in the cactus family native to Central America, is easily seen around the world, sometimes adapting to new environments. The artist also created the augmented reality application “Syncope” to visualize a plant that is reminiscent of Epiphyllum.

An installation view of “Epiphyllum I” and “Epiphyllum III” at Barakat Contemporary in Seoul (Courtesy of the gallery) An installation view of “Epiphyllum I” and “Epiphyllum III” at Barakat Contemporary in Seoul (Courtesy of the gallery)

A young emerging artist, Jun is gaining recognition at home and abroad and is one of four artists whose works are currently on show at the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Korea as part of the annual Korea Artist Prize finalist exhibition.

“The exhibition at Barakat Contemporary is an extension of my works shown at MMCA,” Jun said. The museum is a stone's throw away from the gallery.

Represented by the gallery, Jun has taken part in numerous solo and group exhibitions at MMCA, SeMA, Museum of Fine Arts Bern, Nam June Paik Art Center, Atelier Hermes, Palais de Tokyo in Paris, Villa Vassilieff in Paris, the 11th Gwangju Biennale, Leeum Museum of Art and the National Museum of Art, Osaka.

Meanwhile, Barakat Contemporary has moved to the building that houses Barakat Seoul in Samcheong-dong. The exhibition “Overtone” runs through Jan. 7.