Skip to content Skip to main navigation

Exhibition

Exhibition

Beyond and Between

Introduction playstop

Beyond and Between
This year, Leeum Samsung Museum of Art celebrates the tenth anniversary of its foundation. Since the establishment of Samsung Foundation in 1965, Samsung Museum of Art has collected and exhibited art from Korea and abroad while operating exhibition spaces such as Hoam Art Museum, Hoam Gallery, and Rodin Gallery (later renamed PLATEAU). In 2004, Leeum found a permanent home in Hannam-dong for its collection, consisting of traditional and contemporary art from Korea and global contemporary art, and became a true full-scale art museum.

Curated around the theme, “Beyond and Between,” this exhibition presents a wide selection of works from the museum’s collection, spanning the prehistoric to the Joseon period in terms of traditional Korean art, modern and contemporary Korean art from the beginning of Western influence to pre- and postwar periods, and global contemporary art. The goal of the exhibition is to encourage visitors to explore the possibilities for new understandings and interpretations of our beloved works and to showcase Leeum’s curatorial vision. Leeum is an art museum with an extensive collection of Korean and global art. By pursuing rigorous research and creative interpretations of art, Leeum aims to approach art in new ways and to extend a wealth of visual experiences and opportunities for engagement to our visitors.

Works playstop

Beyond Time

Previous list
Next list
  • Celadon Bottle
  • Air of Earth
  • White Porcelain Jar
  • Dark Side of the Moon
  • My/Our Country
  • Royal Procession Back to Seoul
  • Untitled
  • Amitabha Triad
  • Celadon Bottle  image enlargement
  • Air of Earth image enlargement
  • White Porcelain Jar image enlargement
  • Dark Side of the Moon image enlargement
  • My/Our Country image enlargement
  • Royal Procession Back to Seoul image enlargement
  • Untitled image enlargement
  • Amitabha Triad image enlargement
  • Celadon Bottle
    Goryeo Dynasty 12th century
    Clay
    Height 33.6cm
    National Treasure No.169

    This pear-shaped bottle with its long, flaring neck is of exquisite quality and testifies to the dexterous craftsmanship of Goryeo potters. This shape has its origins in Chinese Song celadons, but the harmonious and refined Goryeo wares far surpass their Chinese prototypes in both form and decoration. The bottle is skillfully adorned with a carved bamboo design: each stalk splits into two at the neck, and the joints are executed in incised double lines. The lustrous, jade-green glaze is evenly applied over the entire surface but has gathered thickly along the deeply incised depressions. The glaze has some crackle and is flecked with brown spots where the vessel was exposed to oxidizing flames. The glazed base is neatly trimmed and has clay spur-marks.
  • Air of Earth
    KIMSOOJA (1957~ )

    2009
    Single channel video projection
    6’25” loop, sound

    Artist
    Kimsooja is an artist who has elevated textiles and sewing, traditionally deemed commonplace media and women’s work, to the status of an art form that frames seminal questions of life and society. In the early 1980s, Kim, who majored in painting in university, discovered in sewing the possibility of overcoming the limitations of the flat surface, a problem with which many contemporary artists were struggling at this time. From that point onward, Kim began in earnest to devote herself to bottari (bundle) installations and performance videos. Kim’s video works created a sensation in the global art world with their unique exploration of such turn of the century issues as migration and nomadism.


    Artwork
    Air of Earth is one of eight videos that compose Earth, Water, Fire, and Air, a multi-channel video project by artist Kimsooja. This work contains footage of an active volcano located in Guatemala and of the immediate transformation of lava into volcanic stone and ash. Captured in this work is Kim’s intention to visualize the earth through the relationships between the elements of fire, water, and air, as they circulate and connect. In observing the creation of volcanic stone and ash in the midst of the spewing hot air, viewers realize the principle in nature that undergoes creation, change, and extinction and the similarities between nature and human life.
  • White Porcelain Jar
    Joseon Dynasty 18th century
    White Clay
    Height 46.5cm

    This white porcelain jar is typical of a type of vessel called a "moon jar," so named for its shape. The jar is representative of the simple style of the all-white porcelain of late Joseon. It is rare to find a piece that is so fully rounded as this one because such pieces were made by throwing the upper and lower hemispheres of the body separately and then attaching them at their rims; the seam would often become distorted in the firing. This particular example is larger than most moon jars, and the seam is almost invisible.
  • Dark Side of the Moon
    YEE SOOKYUNG (1963~ )

    2014
    Ceramic shards, epoxy, stainless steel, copper powder, gold dust, 24K gold leaf
    135 x 135 x 135cm

    Artist
    One of Korea’s leading contemporary artists since the 1990s, Yee Sookyung has presented a variety of works that are not limited to traditional methods or mainstream art while at the same time being connected to daily life and blurring the boundaries of different media. In the early stage of her activities, she expanded the spectrum of her work into diverse areas, including installations, performance, video images, and drawing as she dealt with the reality that individuals and society face based on a rich narrative imagination. Since the early 2000s, Yee has established her own world of art while exploring the theme of “translation,” which connects different elements such as the past and present; individuals and others; society and systems; and cultures of different countries. Her best known works include the Translated Vase series, for which she recreates objects in an artistic context by sticking together abandoned pieces of broken ceramics.


    Artwork
    Yee Sookyung recreates ceramics in the context of contemporary art through the process of gluing together broken ceramic trash abandoned by traditional potters. In this work, she sheds new light on the other side of the history of moon jar by recombining the broken pieces of black-glazed ceramics from Hoiryeong. Black-glazed ceramics were mainly made in the Northern part of the Korean peninsula but they were not as popular as white porcelain and subsequently disappeared. By gluing together the shards using gold leaf, Yee attempts to heal the forgotten history of black-glazed ceramics. Dark Side of the Moon is exhibited alongside the white porcelain moon jar, standing witness to the history and evoking the forgotten beauty of black-glaze ceramics.
  • My/Our Country
    DO HO SUH (1962~ )

    2014
    Bronze
    137 x 194.3 x 8cm

    Artist
    An internationally renowned Korean artist, Do Ho Suh has become increasingly interested in the relationship between the individual and the collective. He seeks to explore the ways in which an individual becomes an anonymous part of the collective. His works include the fabric reproductions of houses from various cities in which he once lived. His persistent quest for a stable identity, probably due to living abroad for a long time, is reflected in his depiction of home.


    Artwork
    In his recent work, My/Our Country, Do Ho Suh, an artist who engages questions of identity through the concept of space, explores the identity of the individual within a collective culture through the geographical lens of “Korea.” My/Our Country is a geographical map of Korea filled tightly with miniature figures measuring 1.5 cm, making each figure extremely difficult to identify. Through this work, Suh highlights the anonymity of the individual within a collective society, yet draws attention to the fact that the collective culture of Korea provides a sense of belonging to each member. Depicting the complex relationship between the individual and the collective, My/Our Country urges viewers to think about individual identity within the context of a nation and suggests how the ever-changing national history and culture of a people are born from the oscillating pull and push between individuality and collectivity.
  • Royal Procession Back to Seoul
    Gim Deuk-sin et al.
    Joseon Dynasty ca. 1795
    Colors on silk
    156.5x65.3cm

    This is one of eight scenes of King Jeongjo's Royal Progression to Suwon in 1795. This is the scene of the king's return to Seoul from Suwon after visiting Hyeon-lyung-won, the tomb of his father, Prince Sado, holding banquet for his mother, Queen Hye-gyeong-gung, and handling other affairs. The huge procession unfolds in a 'zigzag' layout so that the whole procession could be seen. This style of expression was entirely new when this piece was done. Human figures become smaller and the scene narrower towards to the upper part of the scene, a technique of perspective that was very rare for the period. The human figures, trees and other elements of the landscape are remarkably well depicted. Particularly noteworthy is the apparent influence of Gim Hong-do, especially in the detailed expression.
  • Untitled
    MARK ROTHKO (1932~1970)

    1969
    Oil on canvas
    172 x 128.5cm

    Artist
    Mark Rothko immigrated to the United States from Russia as a child, and settled in New York in 1925. At the beginning of his career, Rothko focused on painting people and scenes from the city, but by the 1940s he had begun to explore the organic forms prevalent in Surrealism. In 1946, he relinquished the surrealistic painting style, and between 1947 and 1950 developed his unique abstract painting style of drifting rectangular shapes in two or three colors. As an artist belonging to the first generation of color-field Abstract Expressionism, Rothko had experienced two world wars, a trauma that inspired him to appeal to universal and innate human emotions, emphasizing religious sanctity, awe, and spirituality.


    Artwork
    In Untitled, a black rectangular plane floats on top of a dark red background, reflecting somber feelings of depression. Painted a year before his suicide, Untitled suggests the painter Mark Rothko’s inner state, marked by his suffering from disease and severe depression. Deeply concerned with human emotions about tragedy and destiny, Rothko was confronted with his own frailty and loss of artistic passion and inspiration in the face of death and illustrated the tragedy of human existence with his subdued palette.
  • Amitabha Triad
    Goryeo Dynasty 14th century
    Colors on Silk
    110.7×51.0cm
    National Treasure No.218

    The dominating figure of Amitabha (the Buddha of the Western Paradise) is shown alongside Avalokitesvara (the Bodhisattva of Compassion) and Ksitigarbha (the Bodhisattva of the Underworld) in a scene depicting the welcoming of the faithful to the Pure Land Paradise. From the Amitabha's right hand a mysterious stream of light extends toward the tiny figure kneeling in the bottom left corner, while Avalokitesvara, known as the "one who hears the sounds of the world," bends forward with an offering of a lotus bud in his hand. This rather peaceful scene is interrupted by the figure of Ksitigarbha, who stands somewhat aloofly towards the back. Unlike the others, whose attention is focused on the human, Ksitigarbha stubbornly looks towards the viewer, holding a wish-fulfilling pearl rigidly in his hand. An enlivening tension is created, which along with the unusual composition, splendid color scheme, and meticulous detail, make this painting a true masterpiece of Goryeo art.

Beyond Space

Previous list
Next list
  • Untitled 1956-H
  • Untitled XIV
  • Painting M 10-1963
  • Ten Liquid Incidents
  • Heaven and Earth 24-IX-73 #320
  • Bells from the Deep
  • 925-4 Strip
  • The Inescapable Truth
  • Untitled 1956-H image enlargement
  • Untitled XIV  image enlargement
  • Painting M 10-1963 image enlargement
  • Ten Liquid Incidents image enlargement
  • Heaven and Earth 24-IX-73 #320 image enlargement
  • Bells from the Deep image enlargement
  • 925-4 Strip image enlargement
  • The Inescapable Truth image enlargement
  • Untitled 1956-H
    CLYFFORD STILL (1904~1980)

    1956
    Oil on canvas
    288 x 410cm

    Artist
    Clyfford Still is a representative American abstract painter who employed abstract forms and vivid colors to expose the fundamental essence of Abstract Expressionism. His paintings are characterized by uneven fields of color, thickly applied pigments, and sharply drawn contours, and this exquisite arrangement of color fields imbues the picture plane with a sense of diverseness. Still considered the individual elements of color, form, and the texture of the picture plane to each possess their own autonomy, and he deployed these elements on the picture plane in a balanced manner. He ultimately equated himself to his works, and this artist-centered spirit and the intense visual character of his works reflect the pulse of American Abstract Expressionism’s zenith in the 1950s.


    Artwork
    Recalling an expansive landscape, this work by 1950s American Abstract Expressionist painter Clyfford Still reveals the epitome of the painting style that he pioneered. Irregular color fields with sharply painted contours create a visual rhythm within the picture frame, and the texture of the thick oil pigments compounds the work’s expressionistic character. Still’s paintings neither represent nor symbolize a specific object; rather, they are made up of pure, abstract elements: color, texture, composition, and so on. Identifying himself with his works, Still adhered closely to these characteristics for approximately 40 years. Through his paintings, he attempted to advance forward, toward a spiritual world transcending the materialistic aspects of human existence.
  • Untitled XIV
    WILLEM DE KOONING (1904-1997)

    1975
    Oil on canvas
    206.2x181cm

    Artist
    Born in Rotterdam, Willem de Kooning was a leading artist of American Abstract Expressionism, also called the New York School, of the 1950s. He depicted the dynamism of urban metropolitan New York in energy charged abstractions, and his well-known paintings of city women were executed with violent brushwork and grotesque imagery. In de Kooning's paintings, figure and landscape, foreground and background become interchangeable in spatially ambiguous relationships, to create a painting surface which generates an internal life force and energy.


    Artwork
    Untitled XIV is an abstract landscape painting by Willem de Kooning, dating from the late 1970s. De Kooning left New York and settled in East Hampton in Long Island in the early 1960s. In 1975, he began producing an abstract painting series inspired by the seascapes of New Hampton. This work, painted in 1975, depicts an abstract landscape scene. The artist painted as if spontaneously the impressions he gained of the natural colors of the sea, sand, trees, sky, waves, and so on. The result was a purely abstract canvas, full of explosive and free-spirited energy and unrestricted forms. One of de Kooning’s masterpieces, this work exemplifies an important stage in his late work, which is often compared to Monet’s near-abstract landscape paintings from the Giverny period (1883 - 1926).
  • Painting M 10-1963
    YOUN MYEONG-RO (1936∼)

    1963
    Mixed media on canvas
    162 x 130cm

    Artist
    Since the early 1960s Youn Myeong-ro has been one of the leading artists in Korea. The Wall Exhibition in 1960 was staged as a statement of protest against the National Art Exhibition. Led by young artists outside the walled gates of Deoksugung Palace, the exhibition was a watershed event that brought changes to contemporary Korean art. That same year Youn Myeong-ro graduated from Seoul National University and he has since dedicated himself to the experimental spirit promoted by his peers. In the mid-1960s he became involved in print making. While using Western painting materials, he has maintained a continued interest in the tradition, which is apparent in his Fissure series of mid-1970s, Ollejit series of 1980s, Anonymous Land series of 1990s and Homage to Gyeomjae series of 2000s.


    Artwork
    One of Youn's early works, Painting M 10-1963 is an important work from the artist’s Korean Informel period dating from the 1960s. This painting received critical acclaim when exhibited at the third Paris Biennale in 1963. Using plaster and adhesive to produce a surface texture of low relief, it is painted with silver and blue colors to create the effect of a silver-plated clay relief. The artist was influenced by ancient Chinese bronzes and this painting, in particular, exhibits the artist's interest in a limited palette and textural paint surfaces.
  • Ten Liquid Incidents
    Roni Horn (1955~ )

    2010
    Solid cast glass with as-cast surface
    45.7 x 86.4 ~ 91.4 x 86.4cm

    Artist
    Roni Horn has consistently explored the conceptual themes of sameness and difference, gender and androgyny, language and text while highlighting the natural cycles and flow of nature. Postulating that human experience and perception are dominated by space and time, she has presented diverse works in photography, sculpture, drawing and installation all of which have sought to visualize the “sameness and difference” of identical subjects. Roni Horn’s work is closely related to conceptual art in that it questions its own definition and process of making, while at the same time evoking close associations to minimalism and formal concerns due to their exquisite beauty and material mastery.


    Artwork
    Ten Liquid Incidents reflects Roni Horn’s core exploration of specific material and questions of sameness and difference. The blue cylindrically shaped glass sculptures installed on the floor are reminiscent of ice blocks in Iceland. This sculpture exists in limbo between solidity and liquid and also changes its color in accordance with its surroundings and fluctuations in light. It makes the viewer realize that human experience and perception is susceptible to space and time, and therefore imperfect.
  • Heaven and Earth 24-IX-73 #320
    KIM WHAN-KI (1913-1974)

    1973
    Oil on canvas
    263.5 x 206.5cm

    Artist
    Kim Whan-ki (sobriquet Su-hwa) is one of the pioneers of abstract art in Korea. His works exhibit both a Korean sensibility and modernist characteristics in their combination of Eastern and Western characteristics. Having studied Western painting at Nihon University of Fine Arts in Japan, Kim later opened the Avant-garde Art Institute, and attempted the first Korean abstract painting with Yoo Young-kuk. During the post-war period, Kim formed an avant-garde artists’ group named Shinsasil-pa (New Realism Group), and became a leading member of the Korean modernist movement.


    Artwork
    This work is one of Kim Whanki’s most notable dotted paintings, created during the time he spent as an artist in New York. The entirety of the canvas is filled with blue dots, while a bold white line in the middle of the painting divides the space. Divided horizontally, the canvas resembles the sky and the earth, as indicated by the title of the work. Above the white line, the dots spread into a concentric circle, releasing energy as if they are depicting the movement of celestial bodies, while the layers of dots piled below the line resemble the earth’s strata and convey the firmness of the ground. In making each and every dot, Kim expressed his yearning for the beautiful natural surroundings of his hometown and for his friends, culminating in an abstract landscape painting of Kim’s psyche.
  • Bells from the Deep
    LEE BUL (1964~ )

    2014
    Cast polyurethane, acrylic paint, mirrors, two-way mirror, glass, LED lighting, wood, enamel paint
    370 x 360 x 330cm

    Artist
    Lee Bul became known in the late 1980s for her bold performances in which she criticized the patriarchal Korean society. She has since become an international figure as one of the most important Korean contemporary artists. Including her 1997 exhibition of decaying fish at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, Lee has addressed various themes such as the social absurdity and contradiction, gender, popular culture, technology and city of the future in her works. Such themes are found in her Cyborg and Monster series where utopia and dystopia coexist, Karaoke series which is rooted in the popular culture and the kitsch as well as her sequin works.


    Artwork
    Bells from the Deep is an installation that utilizes two-way mirrors and LED lighting to create the illusion of an infinite number of forms. Two opposing mirror panels reflecting light from a myriad of light bulbs generate the illusion of a three-dimensional labyrinth of corridors that pull visitors into the installation. With both organic and mechanical characteristics in terms of its form, a central polyurethane structure connotes the overlapping of the past and present. In this work, Lee continues to tackle the perpetual question of time and space. Here, the mirror serves as an effective tool that allows for visitors to embark on self-reflection. Bells from the Deep fosters the exploration of existence and substance and illustrates how our understanding and perception of the world are relative and ever-changing.
  • 925-4 Strip
    GERHARD RICHTER (1932~ )

    2012
    Unique digital print
    300 x 300cm

    Artist
    Gerhard Richter is a German artist who continues to innovate the traditional genre of painting. Born in East Germany, he studied social realism in Dresden. After moving to Dusseldorf in West Germany in 1961, he encountered abstract art and strove to find his own expression. In his works, Richter reveals the dichotomies in art historical discourse such as form and content, figuration and abstraction, and painting and photography. His oeuvres are characterized by ironic and not adhering to any single artistic style or movement.


    Artwork
    925-4 Strip is a new work from Gerhard Richter’s series titled Strip. The Strip series pictures have been made using a digital process and are an extension of his earlier Color Chart series as well as the Abstract Painting 724-4 that he made in 1990. It is a large-scale digital print in a square format composed of colorful horizontal stripes. The image is comprised of an arbitrary array of colors that have been linearly arranged. The thin lines of colors that cut across the canvas form a juxtaposition with the expansive surface, portraying constrained tension and latent energy.
  • The Inescapable Truth
    DAMIEN HIRST (1965~ )

    2005
    Glass, steel, dove, skull, formaldehyde solution
    222 x 176 x 74cm

    Artist
    Damien Hirst is a leading member of the Young British Artists (YBA) group, which enjoyed a meteoric rise in the 1990s. He was born in Bristol in 1965, and majored in fine art at Goldsmiths College in London. Hirst became famous for works composed of whole or dissected body parts of animals soaked in formaldehyde solution and displayed in glass cases, which address the theme of death in an extreme manner. Hirst continues to address the fundamental question of life and death through diverse materials and forms using surgical tools or medicines, medical cabinets, taxidermy, anatomical models, spot and spin paintings and so forth.


    Artwork
    In this work which is a part of Damian Hirst’s best known Natural History series, the viewer confronts the subject of death facing a dramatic scene in which a dead dove and skull are contained in a glass vitrine filled with formaldehyde. Hirst has installed a white dove, which in Christianity symbolizes the holy spirit, together with a skull as a symbol for death in a preservative environment, thereby framing his assertion that it is an “unavoidable truth” that both religion and science cannot promise everlasting life.

Between Art and People

Previous list
Next list
  • Gravity stairs
  • Alchemy
  • Directed Development Array
  • Hair on Carpet
  • Symbiointestubetime—The Flavour Happens in a State of Being Flavour Flower Womb Domus
  • Demo Station No. 5
  • q0
  • Tree
  • Gravity stairs image enlargement
  • Alchemy image enlargement
  • Directed Development Array image enlargement
  • Hair on Carpet image enlargement
  • Symbiointestubetime—The Flavour Happens in a State of Being Flavour Flower Womb Domus image enlargement
  • Demo Station No. 5 image enlargement
  • q0 image enlargement
  • Tree image enlargement
  • Gravity stairs
    OLAFUR ELIASSON (1967~ )

    2014
    Aluminum, brass, stainless steel, LED lights, mirror foil, color filter foil, transformer
    780 x 333 x 2,300cm

    Artist
    Olafur Eliasson is famous for his installations, which bring nature inside museums. He deals with natural phenomena such as the sun, water, moss, fog, rain, and rainbows. The artist displays urban people’s way to experience the weather and nature, and how it is mediated by the city in many ways. He has presented a detailed and delicate way to look at physical phenomena which is very similar to the natural phenomena we experience every day but do not sense properly. He earned his reputation with The Weather Project, which was installed at Tate Modern in 2003, and he is expanding his realm of experiments from the museum space to the space of real life.


    Artwork
    Although planets in the solar system made of LED tubes look like complete spheres due to the mirrors on the ceiling and the front wall, they actually exist as half or quarterly objects. This artwork allows viewers to enter a world of the artwork that reminds us of Eliasson’s well-known The Weather Project, in which he established relational aesthetics using mirrors and images of the viewers reflected upon them. Because the locations of planets, including the sun, change relative to a viewer’s movements, one can gain a new visual experience of seeing the universe from other planets.
  • Alchemy
    CHOI JEONG-HWA (1961~ )

    2014
    FRP, steel frame, chrome plating
    1,800 x 32cm

    Artist
    Choi Jeong-hwa is a leading artist who influenced the course of contemporary Korean art in the 90s. Since establishing Gasum Visual Development Laboratory in 1989, Choi has engaged with art from a wide spectrum of fields such as film, theater, graphic design, interior design, architecture, exhibition planning, installation, and public art. In his installations, he employs plastic and industrial goods as materials that symbolize consumerist society. In critically reflecting upon the imbalance that characterizes from Korea’s modernization and the outward exaggeration and structural inadequacies of capitalism, Choi pursued works that involved stacking plastic baskets precariously on top of each other and inflating and deflating massive flower balloons. By breaking down the boundaries between art and non-art, art and commodity, and art and design, Choi presents “the visual environment of a city that formed in itself from a lowly place, but is now slowly fading away.”


    Artwork
    Alchemy is an artwork that is monumental in scope, reflecting Choi Jeong-hwa’s expanded artistic philosophy. It hangs in a long passage filled with light from the rotunda roof of the museum. Just as alchemy refers to magical chemistry that is able to change ordinary materials into gold or an elixir, the artist shows us an “everyday alchemy” by transforming multicolored plastic containers commonly found in our everyday lives into something mysterious, like a jeweled rope coming down from the sky. Believing that “everything is art and everyone is an artist,” Choi is trying to discover the value of art in what is not important and seems non-artistic instead of what is huge and complete.
  • Directed Development Array
    LIAM GILLICK (1964~ )

    2014
    Powder-coated aluminum

    Artist
    Liam Gillick graduated from Goldsmith College in 1987, and is currently based in New York. He has long worked in intellectual, artistic activities in various areas such as fine art, design, publishing, film, and exhibition planning. He is interested in analyzing “readymade” social, political, and economic systems and our interactions within them. He also deals with relationships between artworks and viewers; humans and their social environment; life and artworks; and daily life and architecture or objects. Gillick is well known for establishing various forms of space with modular objects made of mass-produced materials such as aluminum, plywood, and Plexiglas. By creating a kind of platform where free mutual exchanges and conversations can take place, Gillick tries to show audiences that something can happen through art.


    Artwork
    Liam Gillick values natural encounters with artworks, and has established various installation projects at non-art-oriented places such as airports, hotel lobbies, offices, and restaurants. The work installed at Leeum’s café is in the same line of such projects. Gillick covered the black stucco wall, which looks heavy and solemn, with abstract modules consisting of many different colors. This separated the café from the other spaces inside the museum and suggests a kind of discussion platform where “new incidents can happen.” The abstract modules imply social systems that measure off people’s lives and newly organize the café in the form of wall decorations, awnings, and partitions. Installed at the café where visitors eat, rest, and talk, this artwork provides an unexpected encounter with art and becomes a venue for new conversations as it naturally intervenes in visitors’ movements like actual parts of the interior.
  • Hair on Carpet
    Lee Sekyung (1973~ )

    2014
    Hair gathered from beauty salons, plain carpet, high-strength adhesive
    495 x 1870 cm

    Since the early 2000s, Lee Sekyung has been constructing a unique art world whose main component is human hair. Healthy human hair is an external standard of beauty and well-being; yet at the very moment at which it falls from the head, it becomes a “dirty” object that engenders disgust. Lee focuses on these contradictory properties and the fleeting moment in which this extreme change in the perception of hair takes place. She uses human hair to elaborately reproduce various traditional patterns on handcrafted works such as ceramics, tableware, tiles, carpets, and so forth. She then treats and displays these objects as if they were rare museum relics, courting the ambivalent sentiments of fascination and disgust.

    The work shown in this exhibition, entitled Hair on Carpet, is a large scale work of that showcases the artist’s technical skill. Lee Sekyung covered the entire 19 meter-long entry ramp to the main exhibition hall with an embroidered carpet of hair. The artist regarded the time-consuming and laborious process of forming patterns on the carpet from one hair at a time as training in adjusting the mind and body, or as a ritualistic enactment of an ardent desire. When the exhibition opens, the completed carpet becomes an object of aesthetic appreciation as well as serving the function of a surface to be stepped upon by numerous viewers. At the point at which viewers notice that the beautifully patterned carpet has been made laboriously from human hair, they will experience the complex and contradictory feelings of awe (elicited by the elaborate design and the artist’s labor), discomfort (at stepping on human hair), and fear (of ruining an artwork).
  • Symbiointestubetime—The Flavour Happens in a State of Being Flavour Flower Womb Domus
    Ernesto Neto (1964~ )

    2010
    Plywood, polyamide tulle, turmeric, clove, cumin, polyamide fabric, foam
    Symbiointestubetime: 300 × 1267 × 1566 cm
    Domus: 373 × 495 × 495 cm

    Born in Brazil, and contributing to numerous international exhibitions since the mid-1990s, Ernesto Neto produces unique sculptural installations that combine the characteristics of scale, physicality, sensory experience, and Southern American playfulness. His use of semi-transparent, softly drooping fabric transforms the exhibition hall into a completely new and mysterious world with which viewers can commune and interact playfully. He also uses a variety of spices to provide viewers with a rich sensory experience, integrating the visual and the tactile with the olfactory.

    The work by Neto shown at Leeum, entitled Symbiointestubetime—The Flavour Happens in a State of Being Flavour Flower Womb Domus, is a large-scale installation highly representative of Neto’s art. Large, soft, and biomorphic, this work resembles a mysterious organism or the internal structure of a human body. Viewers explore a labyrinth reminiscent of the human internal organs, experiencing an intimate symbiosis with the work as they touch, feel, and pass through a soft fabric that encircles them like skin. On reaching the circular ‘home’ (‘domus’) that contains drooped pouches shaped like flower ovaries, each full of spices such as cloves and cumin, the viewers experience a mysterious feeling of comfort, as if in a womb.
  • Demo Station No. 5
    Rirkrit Tiravanija (1961~ )

    2006~2014
    Plywood, lumber, steel frame, rope, wire, 2 LCD monitors
    370 x 1000 x 1000cm

    Born in Argentina of Thai descent, Rirkrit Tiravanija has created art that mediates communication between people with different local cultures and constructed platforms that give birth to a wide range of activities and ideas. Most notable among his creative efforts are cooking meals for museum-goers, directing a rehearsal for a rock band in an exhibition space, setting up a temporary radio studio, and running a bookstore. Tiravanija implements familiar daily practices into his art in accessible ways and engages his audiences to actively participate in the creative process.

    For Leeum, Tiravanija has installed Demo Station No. 5, which is a contemporary re-creation of Friedrich Kiesler’s Space Stage, a modern stage created in 1924, with a spiral ramp and circular stage. Tiravanija takes Kiesler’s stage and installs it into a museum space and reinvents it into an open “station” for visitors to stop by to enjoy performances, interact with different visitors, and relax. Defying traditional notions of art as static and the museum space as quiet and austere, Tiravanija’s station will serve as a stage for crossover performances of all genres, flash mobs, fashion shows, and workshops during the course of the exhibition. Visitors will play a participatory role in these programs and experience open modes of communication and interaction.
  • q0
    Moon Kyungwon (1969~ ) & Jeon Joonho (1969~ )

    2014
    Single channel video, 20’

    Moon Kyungwon and Jeon Joonho began their collaborative work for the project News from Nowhere (2012), introduced in Kassel Documenta in 2012. The artists collaborated with experts from various fields, such as designers, movie directors, poets, and architects, to ask fundamental questions about “the role of art” with respect to the human condition today, an uncertain future, and an ever-changing world. Since their first project, they have created insightful visions that encompass past, present, and future, exploring a range of possibilities for the directions that art will take.

    The work produced for this exhibition, q0, is a video installation portraying a relationship between art and life that transcends time. A component of the work, Decorated Clam Shells, is a rare relic from the United Shilla period that belongs to the Leeum’s collection. It is decorated in gold and silver using the pyongtal technique, and depicts a peaceful scene of a pair of deer grazing on clam shells. Moon and Jeon have transformed the creation and history of this relic into a fictional story, generating a narrative about reincarnation that combines past, present, and future. The male and female protagonists in the story play multiple roles, crossing between episodes and portraying various periods and characters. The poetic, visual, and symbolic narratives that unfold from the decorated shells describe aspects of human history that transcend time and context, such as love, desire, belief, and regret. In addition, the actual relic installed on the back of the screen is revealed when the video ends, such that the fictional story overlaps experientially with the present moment.
  • Tree
    Ai Weiwei (1957~ )

    2009~2010
    Dead tree trunks from Southern China
    Dimensions variable

    As an artist, architect, urban planner, curator, publisher, poet, and social activist, Ai Weiwei is undoubtedly one of the most influential contemporary artists today. For Ai, art is a social and political activity, and through his numerous projects, he voices criticism against the repression of freedom by the cultural, social and political conditions in China. By provocatively combining the old and new, the West and East, and gravity and defiance, Ai explores and contemplates tradition, contemporaneity, and everything in between.

    The Tree series, which began in 2009, reveals Ai’s continued interest in tradition and contemporaneity. By compositing different parts of old trees collected from the mountainous regions in Southern China, Ai installed a serene and mystical forest within the Black Box of Leeum. Employing traditional assembly methods used in building temples made of wood, Tree brings together the roots, trunks, and branches of old trees with traces of differing temporality to form a new tree. However, visitors immediately notice the artificiality of the newly composited tree and become aware that these trees were not born in nature, but fabricated by human hands. This artificiality serves as an allegory for the reality of China, namely the assimilation of geographically and culturally diverse groups to become “One China” and the uniform artificial landscape of contemporary Chinese cities that lack diversity due to rapid urbanization and development.

Program

  • PROGRAMS
    - Talk 1. Creation of Relations
    Date: 14:00~17:00, August 28
    Venue: Leeum Auditorium
    Speakers: Hyesoo Woo(Chief Curator of Leeum), Liam Gillick, Ernesto Neto, Rirkrit Tiravanija
    ※ Online booking essential (on a first-come, first-served basis, 200 seats available)
    ※ Talks 2~5 are scheduled for September through to November, by artists Moon Kyung won & Jeon Joonho, Kohei Nawa,
    Choe U-ram, Olafur Eliasson, Choi Jeong-Hwa, and Lee Bul.
    For detailed information, see the Leeum website.

    - Between You and Me
    Tab applications are offered in the Workshop Room in the Ground Gallery. You are invited to share your ideas and experiences of
    this exhibition with other viewers, through interactive media programs.

Exhibition Guide

Information
HOURS
Tuesday - Sunday 10:30 ~ 18:00 (Last admission at 17:30)
Closed Every Monday, New Year's Day, Lunar New Year & Thanksgiving Holidays

ADMISSION
Adults 10,000 won / Ages 7-18 6,000 won
Concession 5,000won
Digital Guide 1,000won

GUIDED TOURS
Korean 11:00, 13:00, 15:00
English 14:00 (only on weekends)
※ For guided tours from 5th to 27th of August, see the Leeum website.

Presented by Leeum, Samsung Museum of Art/ Samsung Child Education Center
Sponsored by Samsung Electronics
facebook twitter google weibo
tts