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by UNC Gallery
Location: UNC Gallery
Artist(s): CHOI Seung Hee
Date: 4 Jun - 17 Jul 2015

Evaporation of Compulsion and Repression, a Vision towards me within myself - Text by Kyoung Han Hong (Art Critic) 

Within a painting that reflects a grain of life from reality as garden, one can experience an exclusive aloofness from it. Even though it attempts to conceal itself, it is often more sensitizing than any other beautiful investigation, and such brilliance filled with one line, one side, and one color provides unexpected impression.

That is like a single footnote gracefully binding hundreds and thousands of meanings together, instead of tiresome explanation that drags on forever. And I discover similarity from above through the works of artist. That would be the ‘Black work’ series, which consist of , and many more.

This series can be described as a submergence of several daily objects, surrounding atmosphere and platforms into extremely static state that induce resonance. These are sometimes not verbal, however, but they hold swirling energy and often intuitively realize a self-awareness of existence, which witness the invisible psychological journey that seeks to materialize the existence within inner self. Even so, a screen, which clearly brings on clarity of knowledge, prudently limits the progress of confrontation with impulse or desire, or emptying and filling within reality, or leads us to deprivation of something.

The interesting part is that, like a tree ring, a distinct color which results from accumulation of art theory is becoming more evident. The reason behind this possible interpretation comes from the fact that her recent works, which have returned to painting, (previous works consist of photography, as well as several different installation pieces.) allow us to conjecture upon the placement of aesthetic view, distinct aesthetic value, and its range in regards to her work. Also, the return of dramatic concentration of work from the very beginning is part of the reason as well.

Recent works stand appropriately among a life that ought to swim alone in a stream of history, and a personal narrative which forms from assembling of each portion of life, and repression, projection which cast upon a life of artist and realistic person. Nothing is realized through this simplified brushstroke, but the fact that it enables the emergence of personal shape through projecting independent concepts and involving daily aspect is worth receiving attention. This is because, they are very different from previous works, which symbolized shape, in ways that they keep away from things constructed through objectified shapes, and focus on embedding subjective memories and emotions, as well as placing ‘postponement of a moment’ on a pendulum of time. And the resulting works are named as < Whole Learning Method >, series.

While <Whole Learning Method > contain a steadiness with fire of improvised impulse, <Expiratory-Inspiratory > approaches audience as if it holds a narration within a progress of moment, which does not conceal itself with no need for a circumstance understood by multiples of people. While < Whole Learning Method > looks inside one’s inner self through momentary expression and comprehensively, impulsively record energy which sustain oneself and the means of expression relating to oneself, < Expiratory-Inspiratory >, which places two occasions into one view in contrast-settlement, suggest the movement from the consciousness of artist which had been detouring. More specifically it distinguishes a state of compulsion or confinement, which fails to reveal one’s emotion, in metaphorical way, and it reaches a state of completion by gracefully linking with < Whole Learning Method >. 

Choi’s works being characterized as an act of recording image as well as projection of life continues on to today’s works, however, the fact that the artist’s point of view had shifted from a recording of subject to psychological mechanism provides a bit of contrast. Especially more than any other times, the fact that ‘myself,’ lying beneath a surface of water, slowly rises above a surface is quite meaningful. This not only proves that a way of approaching ‘myself’ has changed, but it also indicates an ultimate turning point in her history of art.

Meanwhile, recent works are characterized through an emphasis on existentiality from actuality, rather than emptiness. Memories and psychological byproduct are floating within it, and artist’s sharp sense of society, emotional sympathy and worry, subject and phenomenon are expressed through her works. The expression from sensory world, which transfers intermittently exposed, vivid color, texture and performance into art, freely overlapping with inner ideal is capable of becoming a factor which regulates her style of painting. However, that is only one of many tents, and the true characteristic of her work is defined as a preference of steady composition to flexible beauty, a dark screen that is not beautiful but has depth, and the color reflecting through the dark image being revealed as an awareness of artist while a daily witness which causes rupture is being recomposed into sentiment of colors.

In fact, for an artist, a painting stands as a creative coinage that serves to deliver not a feast of images held still by others’ gazes, but a story hidden beneath a mind. The essence of art is to be valued as art being substituted with its route of mediation and placing significance within its essence and existing value rather than being defined as subordinate values including diverse shapes and painting. Of course the artist herself as well must be conveying answers from within. 

Anyways, in a writer’s point of view, her works function as a different means of expression which connects several things related to life of her own pursuit. Also, it stands as a mode of rally which limits the odor of human desire, and complex human mentality (actually, if I think about her as if I were a professional psychologist, it wouldn’t be a wrong judgment.). In that respect, her works ultimately deal with a problem of her ‘self’, and they apocalyptically indicate a world that represent ‘myself’ as a center of a world.

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