The Korean Cultural Center Washington, D.C. proudly presents True and False, a new group exhibition showcasing vibrant and diverse multimedia installation works by three contemporary Korean artists who explore the blurring of truth in modern society, opening Friday, September 9.
Tae Eun Kim, Su Hyun Nam, and Ahree Song each place their work in the context of today’s fast-paced, complex world where clear distinctions between fiction and reality are increasingly lacking. Once absolute notions such as true and false or possible and impossible have become ever more obscure as advanced technology continues to overcome humanity’s perceived limitations and our very ability to comprehend it.
By embracing the rapid evolution of science and the digital frontier as a new part of our natural world, Kim, Nam, and Song embody the boundary between reality and fiction through their art, which includes digital multimedia, distortion techniques, installations, and sculpture. This exhibition aims to have audiences reflect on the underlying coexistence of nature and humanity, and to reconsider common expectations and understandings of society.
Tae Eun Kim
Panoramic Diary, electronic paint drawing, touchboard, program, pc, projector, 620X180X100(cm), 2021
Circle Drawing, steel, wood, turn table, 0.5mm ink pen, 140X66X157(cm), 2006
Tae Eun Kim creates media installations that bring together a wide range of topics, including politics, society, science, and history. Collectively, he strives to visualize a science-driven society, whether it be a planned socialist utopia or an American-style model of ubiquitous consumer technology, both of which Korean society has been exposed to in its history. His work presents an intrinsic question about the difference between what is seen and what actually exists in such environments. Kim creates an imaginary space by combining objects and iconography with fictional images. His work freely crosses the boundary between real and unreal, between reality and fiction, and allows audiences to experience a new world amid the gaps.
Tae Eun Kim (b.1971) is an artist and film director working in new media art, including combinations of exhibitions, performances, and video installations. He has held 12 solo exhibitions and participated in national and international group exhibitions including at the National Museum of Contemporary Art (Seoul), Asia House (London), Theater Kikker (Netherlands), Seoul Museum of Art, and Asia Culture Center (Gwangju, Korea). His awards include the Grand Prize from both the Jung-Ang Fine Art Festival and the Ilmin Museum of Art. Kim earned an MFA and BFA in painting from Hong-ik University and his Ph.D. in Media Communication from Yonsei University, all in Korea. He is currently Assistant Professor in the Department of Performing Arts and Mutimedia at Dongyang University, in Korea.
Su Hyun Nam
Enacted Scene, Interactive Virtual Environment, Dimension Variable, 2019
Synthetic Cognisphere, Interactive Video Installation, Dimension Variable, 2022
Su Hyun Nam’s media art presents a digital woven landscape in which the coexistence of complex movement and various living creatures is revealed through observations of city life. Each abstract scene appears vaguely familiar, including views of city life many of us have come to know, yet marked by distorted swaths and manipulated pixels that recall digital imaging errors. Such visual incongruities reflect our own real conflict with unnatural surroundings, and particularly for the artist as an immigrant. Nam thus visualizes the true nature of an unstable symbiotic relationship between rapidly evolving technology and humans living in modern society.
Su Hyun Nam (b.1985) explores her relationship to digital media with an artistic and meditative approach to computation. Her works, including an interactive video installation, 3D game art, and media performance, have been exhibited both nationally and internationally including at venues in Spain, United Arab Emirates, Greece, Singapore, and Korea. Her community-based media performances were showcased at Burchfield Penney Art Center and Hallwalls Contemporary Art Center in Buffalo, New York, and her papers have been presented at international conferences, including SIGGRAPH and the International Symposium on Electronic Art (ISEA). In 2022, she was an artist-in-residence at Lower Manhattan Cultural Center (LMCC) and Harvestworks in New York City. Nam earned an MFA in art and technology studies from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and Ph.D. in media studies from the State University of New York at Buffalo. She is currently Assistant Professor in the Department of Contemporary Arts at Konkuk University in Seoul, Korea.
Contained Time, bell pepper, urethane, 3.1x3.1x5 (in), 2014-2022
Cold Green Animal, river water, sea water, tape, holographic sheet, variable installation, 2022
Ahree Song intervenes in processes of natural change, capturing certain moments through unnatural and artificial means. As a result, her work explores the essential character of an object by means of the fabricated material with which she surrounds it. In order to overcome the unstable effects of time, life, and death on natural things when uncontrolled by human power, Song deliberately changes the environment and thus captures key moments in a form that is both true and false. Ironically, such processed materials that exist between reality and fiction reveal their subject’s true inner nature.
Ahree Song (b.1984) is a performer, sculptor, and installation artist. She received her BFA and MFA, both in sculpture, from Seoul National University, and moved to the United States where she earned an MFA in Fine Arts from the School of Visual Arts, in New York. Recently she completed her Ph.D. in sculpture, from Seoul National University. Her work is based largely on the process of perspective and material change; she focuses on how tension and stimuli arise amid transformation processes and affect our views of reality. Song is the recipient of the Presidential Award in Korea, and her works are housed in the collections of Seoul National University and the Daekyo Culture Foundation, both in Korea. Her work has been the focus of solo presentations at the CICA Museum and Rund Gallery, and included in numerous solo and group exhibitions, including at Seoul Museum of Art, the Kim Chong Yung Museum and Sejong Museum of Art.
True and False will remain on view from September 9 through October 3, 2022 (walk-in hours are 10 a.m. – 5 p.m., excluding 12 – 1 p.m., Monday – Friday).
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