1. The blue of the emerald light, but somehow ominous and unstable colors are draped across the screen, and in it, various unfamiliar and heterogeneous things intertwine dubious shapes and stories. Overall, it seems to be giving off some strange echo due to the swaying and fluid sensation. These are the rough feelings that came to mind when I first saw the artist’s recent works. Besides the overall intention of the work, these individual diagrams and stories that are linked to it also contain their own conceptual reasons, so it seems that we have to read the insides of them one by one, but it is not a simple task. However, what is clear is that even though the things the artist tried to convey may come unrealistically due to the strange and complex aspects, they are ultimately related to our reality. It is conveying a heavy message with a long breath that crosses these numerous individual stories. I am speaking of the dimensions of structural reality. These may be easily visible or invisible things about our invisible backside or outside, but the strategies and methods to capture and reveal them are also overwhelming due to the artist’s fierce efforts in drawing and its conceptual thickness and methods. However, when we think about the strange and complex aspects of the actual reality surrounding us, it is also a part we can agree on. As such, just like the artist has always claimed her interests are always in realism, the artist’s work is connected with real reality outside the screen, even though it is twisted and entangled with the strange and bizarre feelings of the images and stories in the screen.
Although it looks natural and solid, the strategy and method the artist has taken to reveal the real world full of many contradictions and cracks is fantastic and fictional, and through this, the real reality is made to form a relationship to other realities newly produced by the artist.
Through the artist’s unique, strange and ambiguous, unrealistic landscapes that can be linked with fantastic and magical realism, the artist shakes the solid logics of the world that we ordinarily believe in but are seldom easily seen and promotes cracking and rupturing. Thus, the artist reveals our contradictory realities, such as structural violence, the things behind the real society surrounding us. However, unlike other familiar landscapes that contain this repressive reality, he presents it in odd ways with roundabout scenery, an excess or lack of real reality. It is to relate to real reality through paradoxical visualization that conceptually adds fantastic fictional things and leaves room for the original things of reality. With a complex feeling, the hidden inside or outside things are full of tension, sparking curiosity.
For example, in the case of the artist’s “Green Echo” series, the contradictions of the green ideology under the current neoliberalism are questioned. Green here does not mean the same meaning as life, or original nature, but the nature reapplied in civilization, the artificial nature, that is, a hypocritical and contradictory reality. The green concept, which emerged and developed from the 2013 exhibition, 「Green Catastrophe」, is a color that symbolizes an artificial social environment and combines the concept of “camouflage” that hides or glorifies one’s original form like a protective color in the previous works. It is not an everyday image that means a pleasant and spacious nature visible to the eyes, but a green concept as a kind of curtain to hide and reveal the contradictory system of the invisible, cruel reality behind it. For this reason, the artist’s green is far from the pure and simple meaning of green, and is in contact with certain aspects of the ambiguous and murky reality, both sensationally and conceptually. And in the works of the same subject, there are often unknown atypical, fluid shapes and images, which seem to imply some connection with real life, inside or outside the screen.
If so, in the end, the key will be the connections and specific aspects of the actual reality in which the artist’s works are related in some way. For this, let’s first consider the settings of flowers and masks that can often be seen in the artist’s works. For this, let’s first consider the settings of flowers and masks that can often be seen in the artist’s works. The concept of flowers or masks replacing the faces of the characters in the picture is derived from the artist’s unique concept of gaze. The artist’s concept of gaze questioned gaze itself, not gaze in a general sense. This is because she looks at reality by transforming it in a fantastic and fictional way. For this reason, flowers or masks that cover the faces that often appear in the artist’s work represent the fictions and fantasies of the self concealing and camouflaging real gazes. It is not a coherent relationship that looks at the reality accurately, but reveals a situation in which an unstable relationship of distortion and inconsistency with the real reality is formed by fantastic fiction. That is why it is setting the subject(‘s gaze) that is swaying and fluid, and through the relationship of the gaze refracted from reality, the things that have been directed by many others are visible. Therefore, they are anonymous, but swaying beings buzzing noisily, and they are transformed and distorted into shapes in which something of a refracted reality is seen instead of images of visible eyes and faces.
In addition to the non-coherent gazes of these characters, the landscapes surrounding them are also full of indefinite shapes. The works conceptually linked to psychoanalytic discourses also add vague feelings that are seldom easily grasped in the overall arrangement and composition surrounding the questionable icons. In the series of 「Green Echo」, the whimsical and fluid images of the tangled jungle forest surrounding these ghost-like characters and the veils in the screen that occasionally appear block your gaze for a moment and shake. It seems that some unknown reverberation is vibrating the screen, like the concept of echo in the overall titles of these series. As mentioned earlier, it is not a green landscape or image in the usual sense, but a landscape that has been weighted, reduced, and transformed and returned with an uneasy feeling. It may be the meaning of the echo concept the artist pointed out. It is not something that can be seen by a coherent gaze, but an empty, a kind of regression image and landscape that has been distorted, refracted and deformed and returned by a kind of anti-gaze, and re-establishes a relationship with reality in a disjointed way. In this way, things that are removed from our gaze and invisible become visible and return to reality. As the artist said, “The stories of what we have removed are constitutive in our lives. The important thing is that no matter how much you cover or hide or lie, they will always return. Everything that is suppressed in order to not see is not lost just because it is not visible. In the end, it comes back into your life.” Suddenly, the words, ‘It’s just invisible, nothing has disappeared from reality, it’s just circling around it’ come to mind. The landscape of the artist’s unrealistic images revolves around reality like an invisible ghost, sometimes concealing the backsides of it through the echoes and gestures of regression, and sometimes through an inflated excess, constantly summoning the murky reality.
2. Perhaps for these reasons, the artist’s unique way of working to uncover the hidden reality entangled with heterogeneous relationships is also interesting. The artist observes, collects, rearranges, and composes various things surrounding our reality in order to unravel the complex and strange stories comparable to reality. Starting with everything else surrounding the painting, such as philosophy, science, and other theoretical things, (SF) movies, novels, as well as comical or cinematic techniques are used without hesitation, and the online digital world is also used as a component. This will also be one of our realities now in our present day. It is complex due to these aspects, but it will be just as realistic. It is worth noting that the images used as the background and elements of the picture are used not only as real objects, but also as random or contradictory items of inconsistency through Internet search results. It freely uses the methods of collage, montage, and mise-en-scene, as well as standard camera walking and angles. It seems that these very different things were their own techniques to visualize the contradictory reality (relationships). Like surrealism that tries to reveal another reality through the adjacency and juxtaposition of irrelevant things, the artist’s work also shows contradictory relationships with complex reality through the arrangement and composition of these stitched images and seems to be seeking coexistence. In particular, this aspect becomes more evident when considering that he is an artist who is familiar with drawing, which can be a direct expression and composition of a relatively liberal story. At the same time, these are aspects that can be easily connected to the recent digital environment and ecosystem. In that sense, this combination of free media is a means to contain contradictory reality, and at the same time, it seems to be a meaningful interest and approach when the artist’s continuous efforts to expand toward an open reality as another potential possibility are considered.
Interest in contemporary things is nothing but an artist’s effort to steadily capture the transformed reality, and in that sense, the changed topography and reality here have to be the main topics, context, and components that continue to relate to the artist’s work. In this respect, the recent works that the artist is preparing are also related to the contemporary reality of suffering from COVID-19. It’s a work in progress (at the time of writing the manuscript), so I can’t tell you the whole picture, but what stands out as if they are frozen are the settings of pixels that are visible all over the screen. The (broken) pixel, which is commonly referred to in everyday life, is actually only an image viewed from a close or enlarged viewpoint, and thus is a broken and already formed image. These (un)differentiated images seem to be heading towards certain aspects of our multiple realities in that they create a screen with multiple layers of frames. Flower, mask, along with the pixel image covering the face have already been tried in some of the previous works, but implies the anonymous subjectivity of the present era, which is being erased more entirely due to artificial intelligence, digital environment and non-face-to-face and non-contact. I think it might be that the scenes of the world composed of several layers and frames, including this, also talk about a certain contemporary reality and specific phases in which the curtains and veils seen in the artist’s previous works are becoming more multiplexed and complex. In the end, it is a fluid and uneasy reality that is in the process of going towards a large, empty screen, and repeatedly expanding.
3. Like this, the artist’s paintings lead to some conceptual thinking toward reality. Nevertheless, however, it is true that the artist’s work also comes to us through sensation. Therefore, things that come sensibly to us regardless of the discourse framework of psychoanalysis, for example, that are conceptually borrowed or visualized in the artist’s works, certain unique attitudes and perspectives toward reality that are repeatedly repeated in the work is important. For example, the specific relationships between the curtain and reality that are repeatedly draped over and over again in the artist’s work or functioning as the work itself. It is also true that the artist’s work has woven forms and stories that visualize a specific theoretical frame. And although these efforts may have made it possible to approach a deeper and richer reality, the clarification of this is bound to have meaning as a painting is about thinking and also a dimension of sensation that transcends or crosses this conceptual thinking.
Despite the setting of the anti-gaze, the artist’s work is full of visual things, an excess of stories, and lack of them, and at times, the tactile and textured sensations beyond that are also prominent. In particular, these feelings are aggravated as the plans, composed diagrams, arrangements and composition of stories that can be seen in previous works are gradually moving to unpredictable and accidental things that flow into endless images. For example, the colors of an ghastly feeling linked to specific themes of the work remind us of those in the dark reality, and the visual shapes and textures of the flow overflowing with sobbing across the screen make the senses vibrate. The feeling of regression that transforms and amplifies the echo of reality mentioned above is clearly conveyed through sensations. Conceptual curtains, holes, and traces that have been set up like a staggered passage with reality are expanded to the entire screen, and there is no need to set them as components in the screen. To reiterate, another aspect to be noted is that the artist’s work is gradually becoming an ontological, sensory mass that carries the contradictions of reality. The artist’s numerous paintings that contain these stories are repeated and recurrent as much as the tale telling stories toward reality, so that perhaps even concepts become sensational, and these sensations again have conceptual entities. It is as if the artist is constantly joining the (conceptually) vague yet (through sensation) distinct realities at the boundary.
Thus, even if the artist’s paintings are distorted and disfigured, and don’t necessarily talk about the contradictory reality, they appear as some of the substances of a fluid reality that already stands out. In spite of all the conceptual and sensuous transformations and expansions toward reality, this ontological reality will eventually have to remain as a painting that is also another reality. However, nevertheless, the artist’s constant approaches to thinking toward the changing reality, and continuing various pictorial attempts linked to this, and the establishment of the artist’s own method of speech through efforts of transformation are meaningful in the artist’s work and deemed timely with precious virtues.