From September 17th through November 15th, Gyeonggi Museum of Modern Art will present RhythmScape, an annual exhibition that brings together works of art representing contemporary art stream of 2015. Video art, photo documentation and installation work by total of seven artist team, including KWON Yong Ju, NAM Hwa Yeon, YANG Jung Uk, BILLING Johanna, UMEDA Tetsuya, JUN So Jung and CHO Hyejeong & KIM Sookhyun will be on view during the exhibition. RhythmScape is an attempt to read the rhythm of contemporary inhabitant and to listen the rhythm created by urban spaces and the social systems. Through the artworks of the young artists, in which different meanings of rhythm of our body, objects and labor are investigated, this exhibition will provide an opportunity to experience the pulse of our life and society.
As the artist participated in an artistic project hosted by Thailand’s major silk manufacturer, he found his mother’s image who worked as a textile worker for thirty years from the young female workers pouring out from the Thailand’s textile factory. The video presents a visual juxtaposition of the recollection of his mother’s life and the interviews of the Thailand textile workers, as well as clips of textile manufacturing machines, while the installation presents the jacquard fabric and colored threads produced in the silk manufacturer. Here, the artist reveals the relationship between an individual’s life and an economic system, and the social system and environment imposed on the rhythm of an individual’s labor.
Nam Hwayeon has investigated the relationship between man and nature, the movement and phenomenon of various things working in connection with social system, and the structure and nature of time which is expressed by appropriating the body. Ant Time is a photographical record of a 1-minute long trajectory of the movement of ants, around the abdomen of which a thread is tied. Observing the ants which move along different trajectories, one would find the repetition and difference of the movement, as well as the attribute of time which is inherent in them.
Remind us of Yvonne Rainer who incorporated every daily movement and all forms of human gesture in dance, this work inquires into the relative rhythm of the body which perceives the tempo and rhythm of other bodies through its own movement. Organized by Johanna Billing and led by Swedish choreographer Anna Vnuk, the video is a recording of the choreography workshop during the Periferic Biennial in Romania in 2008. With these daily movements of Romanian young people who underwent a massive socio-political upheaval, the viewer finds not a complete form of dance performance, but a social choreography which is completed on the basis of process and experience.
A car stops at the end of the road, which causes a traffic jam with a long line of cars. With no way out, it is entirely up to the drivers how to spend the time left. Swedish composer and filmmaker Johanna Billing weaves a time spanning over a staged situation of a traffic jam, accompanied by Swedish singer-songwriter Edda Magnason’s piano improvisation. Here, we find a small utopia appearing where the cyclic rhythm of our everyday life is upset.
In Treasure Island, Sojung Jun who observed and researched on individuals working between art and artisanship and between art and life in recent years tells us the story of a Haenyeo(Korean female free diver), whose work mediates between man and nature. As Korean traditional singer Kim Yulhee sings a song of Jeju grandmothers and mothers in her adorable voice, clips of Haenyeos of the Saekdal beach, Jeju, doing “Muljil,” or diving into the sea to gather seaweed, abalone, etc. are played in the background. Keeping the ancient way of living, or collecting and hunting, Haenyeos should both fight against and adapt to nature. In this way, they know how to live to the rhythm and cycle of nature.
Sojung Jun, who makes a narrative about those who work on the border between art and artisanship, tells us the cosmos of a piano tuner in The Twelve Rooms. Each sound coming from a grand piano tuned by tuner Lee Jongryeol is visualized as each different color and the artist gives different interpretations of different colors. Looking into the ‘room of sound’ cherished by a person who has lived with musical tones all through his life, the viewers could watch the rhythm of a profession which adjusts the functions of the delicate senses.
Workers in the area of modern service industry are required to perform not merely physical labor, but also emotional labor. Hyejung Cho and Sookhyun Kim interviewed those who are called emotional laborers and recorded the role-playing performed by dancers representing these labors. In capitalist society, the human nature of emotions and feelings, such as joy, anger, sorrow and pleasure, are reified as ‘service,’ which leads to the distortion of natural feelings and behaviors.
Yang Jung Uk’s work typically moves in a regular cycle. It closely observes and records the various layers of emotions and social contexts of an individual’s gestures. In the exhibition, Yang presents a work which captures the rhythm of the small and trivial movements of repetitive work of those who have to do their job standing. Their gestures—such as taking turns transferring the body weight from one leg to the other to relieve muscle aches in leg, churning their arm explaining the way to those who ask for directions, and absent-mindedly standing with their arms swinging— are reborn as kinetic sculptures powered with a small electric motor, which refers to a narrative of our common but valuable everyday life.
The artist finds an object in the environment of a given space and stages a ‘situation’ created by the movement of it. In After Space, objects are connected with each other through minor electricity and the consecutive movements of them circulate by advancing toward very slowly. A tea infuser, a small fan, a light bulb, and a big shower head are characters, or more precisely, protagonists, which brings about non-expectable, accidental movements, sounds and landscape of shadows. In this ‘performance of objects,’ we see a sudden change from a familiar space to a scene of a dream, as if on the stage of a play.
“Do you know the way? Have you ever been? Do you remember? Have you ever heard?” A song sung by many voices, the lyric consists of four sentences with a similar rhyme. Having watched so many local art festivals that were just filled with large-scale monumental sculptures and installations, Umeda Tetsuya considered how he could develop deeper communication with a local community through a work of art and came up with an idea of a sculpture made up of sounds. The familiar melody of After Hours, to which one constantly sings along, is a copy of the harmony of “Here’s To You” by Ennio Morricone. The round that sounds like a traditional children’s song makes the listeners dream about a story that may be hidden in the sound, as if telling us an old legend that has been long forgotten.
Contemporary Art Stream 2015
2015.9.17 – 2015.11.15.
Gyeonggi Museum of Modern Art 2F Exhibition Hall
Artists │ Youngju Kwon, Hwayeon Nam, Junguk Yang, Johanna Billing, Umeda Tetsuya, Jun Sojung, Hyejeong Choi+Sookhyun Kim
Exhibition in Charge│ Eunju Choi
Curator in Charge│ Chaeyoung Lee
Assistant│ Sunkyung Jung
Exhibition Space Design│ Yongju Kwon
Graphic Design│ Designer ShinShin
Communication│ BANG Choa,
Curatorial Team│ Wonmo Yang, Woochan Park, Bonsu Park, Rokju Hwang, Kiyoung Choi, Gahye Yoon, Yoonseo Kim, Song-ah Oh, Jihyun Seo, Sae-mi Jang, Jinsil Lee, Youngsoon Choi
Administrative Supports│ HyunKyung Lee, Seunghee Lee, Jiyeon Lee, Soo-mi Jung
Project Supports| PR&Marketing team, Gyeonggi Cultural Foundation
Facility Management│ Un-soo Shin, Kyung-uk Kim, Namgyu Joo, Manheung Cho, Jong-ok Moon
Exhibition organized by Gyeonggi Cultural Foundation
Exhibition principal boiler by Gyeonggi Museum of Modern Art
Sponsored by Japan Foundation