Exhibition highlights Koreas first video artist Park Hyun-ki:
Where exactly does chaos meet order? The East meet the West? Korea’s first video artist Park Hyun-ki explored where the moving meets the still, where seemingly polar opposites clash, but also where they coexist. Video art was a new artistic medium, not just for Kim but also for the world. And for Park, media became just a tool, a tool for an artist bent on finding the place where traditions of Korea could harmonize with the new Western world and where nature coincides with humanity. (KOREAN) “These artworks are on the foundation of nature, but also of Korean traditions. He wanted to find harmony with Western formal language in Korea. Things like rocks, trees and rivers, they can be found around the world, anywhere you go, and naturally for Park they became art that harmonizes with humanity.” And nature immediately became his focus, necessary to begin a piece, he would have to go looking for his materials in the great outdoors. The rocks gathered from nature would lead Park to works, like his video stone tower, a work that would become key pieces to the development of his career. The rocks, taken from Mother Earth, surround cold, glass screens that project the same image as you would expect to see in nature. Park blurs the line between reality and illusion in his low tech, unnaturally natural work. But his inspiration from nature goes much deeper than the materials he used. Park found a continuous cycle in life, and he conveyed that flow through his video art, each screen capturing another step in this circuit. He found this flowing, connected system in the cosmos and the world, but also in his own two hands. (KOREAN) “For Park, one of the important images is the hand. The hand has five fingers, but it also holds the five senses, the five elements and even the universe. The hand is close to you, it’s something you use and see everyday, so for Park, it was a big part of his search to find harmony in our world.” Park continually strove to think of ways of preserving the traditions of Korea while still adapting to a rapidly Western and modern world. He was always looking for a unique angle on Korea, and as a result of his perseverance, he may have found that center. Yim Yoon-hee, Arirang News.