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MOON Shin and GWON Osang’s Dual Exhibition “Carving in, Modeling out”, on View Through June 22, 2024, at ARARIO GALLERY SEOUL

“Carving in, Modeling out” Installation view ©ARARIO GALLERY

ARARIO GALLERY SEOUL presents the joint exhibition titled “Carving in, Modeling out” featuring sculptors MOON Shin (1922-1995) and GWON Osang (b. 1974), through June 22. This exhibition aims to connect the diverse artistic initiatives of MOON Shin, who has been recognized for his innovative and pioneering attempts in the history of Korean sculpture from the 1970s to the 1990s, with the sculptural experiments of a younger artist GWON Osang, who has been acknowledged for his new experiments in different medium since the late 1990s.

Rather than presenting the works of the two artists separately in chronological order, the exhibition mixes their works naturally across three themed exhibition spaces. Furthermore, GWON Osang has created special works for this exhibition that reinterpret and pay homage to MOON Shin’s works, moving beyond merely listing the works of the two sculptors to showcasing their interaction. The primary reason for linking these artists is their common focus on sculptural research through form construction and experimentation with various materials, which prominently characterizes both sculptors.

MOON Shin, who transitioned from being a painter to a sculptor, focused on a sculptural approach that involved arranging and constructing minimal sculptural units rather than representing specific forms or images. MOON’s abstract sculptures resulted in unique forms featuring organic shapes that evoke living organisms or distinctive curves that express his inherent rhythm.

Beyond the uniqueness of form construction, MOON was pioneering in his use of materials and methods, where he often built basic frameworks with wire or metal mesh, overlaying these with plaster that he could carve. This exhibition highlights MOON’s works from the 1970s along with sculptures that were created from the late 1980s to the 1990s.

Another artist, GWON Osang, emerged in the late 1990s with his innovative approach to lightweight sculpture. GWON experimented and introduced his Deodorant Type series, which are also called photo sculptures, where he carved shapes from isopink, then attached photographs and added a coating to create the final surface. GWON has continuously presented various sculptural and technical studies.

In this exhibition, not only are new abstract photo sculptures introduced, but existing photo sculptures are also expanded and for the first time, these works in the forms of busts and full figures have been reinterpreted in bronze, a material typically associated with traditional sculpture. Additionally, an expanded version of his three-dimensional photo sculptures is presented in relief, emphasizing one side of the sculpture.

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