Exhibition "Akin to" opens on June 17th

June 17 to July 11, 2008

Gallery Korea, Korean Cultural Service NY
6:00pm to 8:00pm on Tuesday, June 17, 2008

The Korean Cultural Service NY proudly presents the exhibition Akin to, from June 17 to July 11, 2008, which features the works of eight artists:  Carol Radsprecher, Gowoon Lee, Jamie M. Lee, Joon Hyun Hwang, Yoon Jeong Han, Margarida Correia, Colin Kim, and Eun Woo Cho. Akin to is the second show in this year’s Call for Artists 2008 finalists series, curated by Yu Jin Hwang. The opening reception will be held at Gallery Korea, Korean Cultural Service NY from 6:00pm to 8:00pm on Tuesday, June 17, 2008.  

The artists in the show are drawn to memory to create various artworks, including photographs, videos, paintings, and drawings, to project their personal or public memory into images of real life or dream. While Joon Hyun Hwang, Margarida Correia, Eun Woo Cho and Colin Kim incorporated people, place and plot as the framework for their artworks, Carol Radsprecher, Gowoon Lee, Jamie M.Lee and Yoon Jeong Han focused on the emotion and imagination to reconstruct the fractions of the memory. 

Margarida Correia tells the memory of an old theatre building in the set of five photographs, called, “the Dolan’s Opera House”. This project is the exploration of the history of the opera house, which she found by chance during her residency program at Woodstock in 2005. Once beautiful theatre, built by the first owner Michael Dolan who directed the opera house with utopian dream, it is deserted with remnants from its heyday, in her photographic record.    

Joon Hyun Hwang’s “Portraits of Unknown Actors” series present the specific moment of the actors performing the scene or exhibiting their expression in the space on daily base. In ordinary life, these actors are staged at the same time with the grand gesture and artificial lighting. The moments set up by the artist with the actors in the past equally produce the tension and immediacy of the spectacle to the viewers at this present tense.

Eun Woo Cho’s “Red Skirt Project” is a video work of the fictional event with historic connotation of a certain group experience. Performance of a group of Korean women wearing red skirts, whose color and draperies remind of the very traditional Korean women’s dress, looks like a festive dancing, but there’s also sexual implication of women being exploited or victimized. The identical outfit of all the women and their movement make the whole scene both pleasant and anxious to watch.

Colin Kim, on the other hand, presents video pieces out of his own personal experience from his childhood memory in particular. Born abroad and raised in Korea, Kim, in ‘Special’, tells a story questioning his identity and heritage in the culture alien to himself. Another piece, ‘Off White’, is dealing with the similar theme of confusion of one’s identity. Adaptation of David Henry Hwang’s “Trying to find Chinatown”, (a fiction about several men’s memories they share), the work presents five different men’s parallel situation. 

Yun Jeong Han’s mixed media works are portraying the artist’s hunger in mental and physical state of her daily life. The titles of the works are associated with meals such as ‘Le Pain’, ‘Three Waiters’, and ‘Cup Cake’, and the images describe the corresponding scenes. Executed in a fast way to depict the moments of having meals by which her hunger is satisfied, a series of works are in total by the accumulated moments, thus virtually becoming her diary.

Gowoon Lee features her mixed vision of dream and memory in a series of “Cloud  tree” paintings. Cloud is a major motif to emphasize the imaginary world she creates, and is transformed into various forms and colors having human bodies inside. The curvilinear outlines of bodies and clouds are interlocked and produce a field of dream especially in the horizontally long piece –210 cm wide.

Jamie M. Lee wants to evoke memories with the non-figural paintings full of spontaneous brushstrokes delivered from her emotions and senses expressing the memories; the images on the canvas are transformed from her personal sensory experiences and specific time. Her tactile collage paintings made of materials such as gel, glitter, fabric, paper also intensify the emotions and senses for that particular fleeting moment.

Carol Radsprecher translates the body images associated with her difficult childhood memory into a turmoil composition, both figurative and abstract, in a series of small canvases.   The drawings which were executed rapidly, symbolize the stormy period, on canvas – the window to show a threatening and intricate world. 

Gallery hours are 10:00am to 5:00pm from Monday through Friday (appointment only for Saturday) and closed on July 4th. For more information, contact Yu Jin Hwang, curator of Gallery Korea, Korean Cultural Service NY at 212-759-9550 or nyarts@koreanculture.org.

Miro Yoon