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    Soyoung Chung Solo Exhibition: WATERS

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    Date. 2023.01.13 - 03.02

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    Place. 021gallery



    Soyoung Chung Solo Exhibition



    021gallery is pleased to present Soyoung Chung’s solo exhibition, ‘Waters,’ the first exhibition in 2023.
    Soyoung Chung pays attention to the time and space we live, i.e., nature and the universe. The artist works on materializing them by grasping various phenomena and stories created within nature and the universe on a continuum that leads to the past, present, and future.

    The title of this exhibition, ‘WATERS,’ suggests a situation in which the realm of ‘water,’ which has been the core element of the marine research she has been undertaking for the past five years, is conceptualized as ‘multilateral’ when it meets human society and politics. When water as a substance becomes waters in a plural form, ‘waters’ become a designator as a category that humans classify and name. For example, waters are chemical components that play a role of various moisture in the human body. Waters collectively refer to streams, rivers, and seas classified according to size or international waters in a geopolitical context. The artist is interested in the point where ‘water’ meets humans and ignites the narrative. As geologists infer natural history by studying fragments of land, the artist explores the world of ‘water’ and draws out the human history entangled with ‘waters.’

    In this exhibition, the artist presents sculptures and mirror works that capture various situations in which physical properties are transformed.

    The <Mirrors for Mirok Li> series began while reading The Yalu River Flows (1946) by Mirok Li, after Chung sailed the Yalu River between North Korea and China in 2019. The distance of time and the difference in experiences between the artist and Mirok Li are embodied as stained mirror that blurs the boundaries of reality. The geopolitical uniqueness of the Yalu River is understood differently depending on the era. It is condensed with the multilayered temporality and placeness of nature. Personal history and politics the artist imagines leave physical traces on the glass surface. The mirror, which seems to be stained all over the place, borrows the method in which chemicals such as silver nitrate and ammonia water cause chemical reactions, adhering to the glass surface. The silver glass substances return the glass surface to light. The time of the artist and Mirok Li becomes a mirror of water and captures the scenery of the exhibition hall. The viewers are projected onto the water, which can never fully reflect themselves.


    The sculptures <Island for Fisherman VI>, <Sailor>, <The Ugliest Fish>, and the video work <Drawing Island> are also presented in this exhibition. The artist questions the invisible boundary of the sea by using the buoys that drifted from the seas of China and Japan to the coast of Gapado Island. Through the course of a ship drawing a circle that never closes by casting a rope on the sea, we face the time of humans that disappear after staying in nature for only a brief time.

    Through shimmering by light, sinking and rising elasticity, squashing and unfolding pressure, and rising and flowing movements, the artist builds material and immaterial simultaneously, crossing the boundaries of sculpture.

    “... The form of everything changes depending on the environment. And a sculptor like me captures that moment. At first glance, the work seems to have a fixed form, but in fact, the form engraved in memory changes when it passes through the ideas and perspectives of others. The act of appreciation is a process that is naturally accepted through the viewer’s interpretation. Through this sequence, the objects that have been stationary change and expand by those who receive.”

                                                              - From an interview with the artist