DOOSAN Gallery (15 Jong-ro 33-gil, Jongno-gu, Seoul)
DOOSAN ART LAB Exhibition 2023
January 11, 2023 – February 15, 2023
Even in 2023, various art institutions continue to support and spotlight the works and practices of young Korean artists. The DOOSAN Art Center, which has been supporting young artists in the fine arts and performance arts, opened the DOOSAN ART LAB Exhibition 2023 as the first exhibition of the year at the DOOSAN Gallery. The DOOSAN ART LAB program, which has been running since 2010, is a call-for-artist program that selects five artists under the age of thirty-five and highlights their work through a group exhibition.
Artists Nayoung Kang, Leesop Cho, Changkon Lim, Hyojoo Jang, and Yaloo are participating in the 2023 edition of the DOOSAN ART LAB Exhibition, running from January 11 to February 15, 2023. The five artists attempt to reflect on the numerous barriers they have faced in society and show their distinct and creative ways of revealing these issues.
Artist Nayoung Kang captures the changes in time and space when an individual’s state of mind is projected onto a particular situation through various media such as sound, video, and installations. Interested in the lives of social minorities, such as the elderly and the disabled, the artist presents To Barely Fit (2023), a new work reminiscent of a revolving door at the exhibition. The revolving door is a convenient device for most people as it does not require them to open or close it. However, those with disabilities could experience it as an obstacle that prevents them from coming and going. Kang alludes to the two sides of the revolving door with an artificial limb. The artist covered the installation with soft cloths or made it look like soft skin to convey a gesture of care through the soft texture. Kang attempts to provide viewers with an opportunity to look back on those who cannot cross the threshold in our society and reconsider their situation.
Nayoung Kang (b. 1989) received her master’s degree in sculpture from the Royal College of Art in London after graduating from the Department of Fine Arts at the University of Leeds. Kang held a solo exhibition at Space OS (Seoul, 2019) and participated in group exhibitions at Incheon Art Platform (Incheon, 2022), Outsight (Seoul, 2021), Amado Art Space (Seoul, 2020), Chiswick House (London, 2018), Safehouse Gallery 2 (London, 2018), and Sculpture Garden (London, 2016).
Artist Leesop Cho creates vertical sculptures using materials such as silicon, plaster, beads, thread, paper, and feathers. Flower is a subject the artist often expresses in his artworks. Flowers in full bloom enchant not only bees and butterflies but also the human gaze. However, their beauty is short-lived and they are unable to move freely. In Cho’s works, this duality of flowers is reproduced in black and white using industrial materials, which are far from vitality. In this exhibition, Cho created four arched doors leaning against the wall. Doors have the ambivalence of opening and closing and imply a passage, a fence, a window, and a mirror. In his artworks, Cho expresses his inner anxiety and incompleteness, stemming from the ambivalent feeling of wanting to reveal himself freely while hiding his identity as a sexual minority.
Leesop Cho (b. 1994) received a BFA in sculpture at Seoul National University and is currently pursuing a master’s degree at the same institution. He had a solo exhibition at Kimchongyung Museum (Seoul, 2022) and group exhibitions at Suchi (Seoul, 2022), LaLa& (Seoul, 2022), Space Four One Three (Seoul, 2021), Museumhead (Seoul, 2021), Gallery 175 (Seoul, 2021), Coreana Museum of Art (Seoul, 2021), and Wess (Seoul, 2021).
Artist Changkon Lim creates paintings on panels of various shapes. Lim squeezes the male body into a panel. Sometimes the body gets caught in the frame and the panel cannot capture the whole figure. The reddish-tinged body is delicately depicted, with the texture of the muscles and rough skin visible. The frame of the panel represents social norms, and the image of the body stuck inside the panel symbolizes the artist or those similar to him. The artist captures his concerns as an LGBTQ artist, his efforts to find his place in society, and the uncertainty and conflict he feels in society. By disassembling and recombining different panels, Lim attempts to overcome the limitations of the human body imposed by social norms.
Changkon Lim (b. 1994) earned a BFA at Seoul National University and had solo exhibitions at Space Cadalogs (Seoul, 2022) and Art Space Hyeong (Seoul, 2019). Lim has participated in group exhibitions at Space Four One Three (Seoul, 2020), BGA Index (Seoul, 2022), Hite Collection (Seoul, 2021), Museumhead (Seoul, 2021), Hall1 (Seoul, 2021), Post Territory Ujeongguk (Seoul, 2019) and Woosuk Gallery (Seoul, 2018).
Artist Hyojoo Jang experiments with sculpture by utilizing various media beyond common sculptural materials. The materials the artist use range from objects easily found in our daily lives to industrial materials such as ceramics, epoxy, latex, artificial fur, metal, and fabric. The artist abandons the original function of materials and objects and mixes them in her own way, creating bizarre forms by combining materials in unexpected ways. Jang seeks to emphasize the textural characteristics that can be found in boundaries, for instance, moments facing a virtual image in the real world or encountering something leaking out from the inside. In this way, the artist aims to expand the limits of sculpture.
Hyojoo Jang (b. 1988) graduated from Kookmin University and studied at Akademie der Bildenden Künste München under Professor Stephan Huber and then graduated the Diplom as Meisterschülerin from Professor Alexandra Bircken. Currently based in Seoul and Munich, Jang has held solo exhibitions at Saga (Seoul, 2022) and Gedok (Munich, 2021) and participated in group exhibitions at the Ulsan Art Museum (Ulsan, 2022), Wess (Seoul, 2021), Galerie der Künstler (Munich, 2021), and Artothek & Bildersaal (Munich, 2021).
Artist Yaloo’s works are based on digital media, such as projection mapping, VR, media walls, and digital montage. Based on her cultural identity as a Korean and her multicultural experience, Yaloo creates images that symbolize contemporary consumer culture. While experimenting with the possibilities of media art, Yaloo builds a new worldview in which colorful, imaginative beings coexist. Pickle City Dive ver. 2023 depicts a virtual deep sea where beauty, fear, bizarreness, awe, and various histories are mixed together. Inspired by science fiction, history, futurism, and mythology, Yaloo creates new landscapes that are free from human-centered and power-centered perspectives. She dreams of a future where human and nonhuman values coexist.
Yaloo (b. 1987) received both her BFA and MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC). Living and working in Seoul and Chicago, she has held solo exhibitions at Saga (Seoul, 2022), Shhh (Incheon, 2022), Vox Populi (Philadelphia, 2019), and Art Center Nabi (Seoul, 2019). She has also participated in group shows, including those held at FACT (Liverpool, 2022), ZER01NE (Seoul, 2022), and Asia Culture Center (Seoul, 2019).