Lee Kun-Yong: Equal Area
SYDNEY. 20 JANUARY – 25 FEBRUARY 2018
Lee Kun-Yong with Australian artists Huseyin Sami, Daniel Von Sturmer and Emily Parsons-Lord.
Equal Area presents the work of Lee Kun-Yong, one of Korea’s most seminal conceptual artists, charting the development of his visual and theoretical methodology that has expanded possibilities for performance art since the 1970s. Lee is widely acclaimed for his innovative series of performances that examine the the connection between the logic of the mind and the gestures of the body. Throughout his career, Lee has investigated the connection between the human psyche and action through the act of performance and performance. His performances often test this relationship through the act of repetition, demonstrating how the construct of logic is subjective to its locale — slight shifts in each performance capture the body within present moments, leaving traces of an ‘event’.
In this unique presentation of photographic documentation of performances spanning his almost six-decade career, 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art brings Lee Kun-Yong’s practice into dialogue with three contemporary Australian artists. Equal Area opens with a special performance of Snail’s Gallop, one of his most critically lauded works which he is staging in Australia for the first time. This is followed by a series of performances and live interventions by Australian artists, taking place in dialogue with the residue of Lee’s performances, that build on this examination of the repeated gesture and elucidate Lee’s influence on global contemporary performative practice.
Lee Kun-Yong (b. 1942, Sariwon, Korea; lives and works in Gunsan, Korea) is one of Korea’s most seminal conceptual artists, exploring the nexus between the human mind and its connection to the world. His experimental performative practice emerged in 1970s South Korea, a period where the country was marked by diminished civil rights and martial law, including civilian assembly controls and tightly scrutinised codes of social propriety. Through this period, Lee led numerous artistic responses to the political climate, creating subversive automated drawing experiments that made subtle yet identifiable comments on the authoritarian state. He continues his line of experimentation today, collaborating with new artists and bringing his messaging into the 21st century.
Lee Kun-Yong’s exhibition history includes: Experimental Art of Suwon in the 1980–1990s: It’s Not Quite That (2017), Suwon iPark Museum of Art, Suwon, Korea; As the Moon Waxes and Wanes (2016), National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Gwacheon, Korea (MMCA); Lee Kun-Yong in Snail’s Gallop (2014), MMCA; Korean Historical Conceptual Art 1970–80s: Jack-of-all-trades (2010), Gyeonggi Museum of Modern Art, Ansan, Korea; Lee Kun-Yong: Logic, Life, Commonplace (1998), Fine Arts Center of The Korean Culture and Arts Foundation, Seoul, Korea; A Groping for the Identity of Korean Contemporary Art II: The Art in the ‘Reduction’ and ‘Expansion’ Period (1991), Hanwon Gallery, Seoul, Korea; Korean Contemporary Art: The Trend of the 1970s (1974), Taipei Fine Arts Museum, Taipei, Taiwan; 8th Biennale de Paris (1973), Paris, France; and 15th Bienal de São Paulo (1979), São Paulo, Brazil.
His works are held in numerous public and private collections, including the Jeonbuk Museum of Art, Wanju, Korea; Leeum, Samsung Museum of Art, Seoul, Korea; National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Seoul, Korea; Seoul Museum of Art, Seoul, Korea, and The Rachofsky Collection, Dallas, USA.
Emily Parsons-Lord (b. 1984, Bathurst, NSW; lives and works Sydney) is a cross-disciplinary contemporary artist whose art and practice is informed by research and critical dialogue with materials and climate science, through investigation into air and light, both materially, and culturally. Parsons-Lord’s work interrogates notions of the ‘natural’, the universe, and considers deep history and speculative futures, with works that engaged with the materiality of invisibility, magic, and the stories we tell about reality.
Select exhibitions include: NSW Visual Arts Fellowship (Emerging), Artspace, Sydney (2017); There is nothing accidental or surprising about this, Vitalstatistix for Climate Century, Port Adelaide (2017-2018); The Future Leaks Out, Liveworks Festival, Carriageworks, Sydney (2017); Primavera, Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney (2016); Trod by Beasts Alone, Wellington St Projects, Sydney (2017); Bristol Biennial: In Other Worlds, Bristol, UK (2016); Our Fetid Rank (Margaret Thatcher’s bottom lip and Bill Clinton’s tongue), Firstdraft, Sydney (2015); Ever Fresh, STILLS gallery, Sydney (2015); Underbelly Arts 2015, Cockatoo Island, Sydney (2015); busied and bruised with looking, Perth Centre for Photography, Perth (2015).
Parsons-Lord has been a finalist in the NSW Visual Arts Fellowship (Emerging) in 2017 and the Fishers’ Ghost Award in 2016. Her work is held in the collection of Artbank, Australia.
Huseyin Sami (b. 1979, United Kingdom; lives and works Sydney) has been exhibiting since the late 1990s, with a multi-disciplinary practice that engages with painting, sculpture and installation. Sami’s work challenges and investigates the possibilities of paint itself – working with the colour, form and materiality of household acrylic paints but without any of the tools, gestures or decisions normally associated with the medium – letting paint drop and pool and paintings to ‘virtually make themselves’. Sami’s practice poses questions and develops new strategies for the production of paintings.
Selected exhibitions include Superposition of three types, Artspace, Sydney (2017); Shut up and Paint, National Gallery of Victoria (NGV), Melbourne (2016); Whispers from a Band of Myth Makers, Sarah Cottier Gallery, Sydney (2015); Assemblage II, 107 Redfern Projects, Sydney (2014); Never Underestimate a Monochrome, Wignall Museum of Contemporary Art, Rancho Cucamonga, USA (2013); 3, with Koji Ryui and Brandan Van Hek, Alaska Projects, Sydney (2013); Twenty/20, UTS Gallery, Sydney and Dubbo Regional Gallery, NSW (2010); Blue Blah! And other works, Kunst Projects, Berlin, Germany (2009); and Primavera, Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney (2004). He was the winner of the 2005 Fauvette Louriero Memorial Artists Travel Scholarship.w
Sami’s work is held in many public collections, including that of the Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney; National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne; Artbank, Australia; Saatchi & Saatchi, New Zealand, as well as in private collections in Australia, Germany, Great Britain, Japan and the United States.
Daniel von Sturmer (b. Auckland, New Zealand, 1972; lives and works in Melbourne) is a leading video and multimedia artist whose works investigate and orchestrate the fields of relation between things, people, light, space, video and time. von Sturmer’s practice integrates video, photography and installation and often tests the ways in which the audience views artworks inside and outside the gallery.
In 2007, von Sturmer represented Australia at the 52nd Venice Biennale, showing in the Australian Pavilion. Recent exhibitions include: Electric Light (facts/figure), Bus Projects, Melbourne (2017); Under the Sun, State Library of New South Wales, Sydney and Monash Gallery of Art, Melbourne (2017); Red Green Blue: A History of Australian Video Art, Griffith University Art Gallery, Queensland College of Art, Brisbane (2017); Collective Visions: 130 Years, Bendigo Art Gallery, Victoria (2017); Shut Up and Paint, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne (2016); The Kaleidoscopic Turn, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne (2015); 21st Century Heide: The Collection Since 2000, Heide Museum of Modern Art, Victoria (2015); Camera Ready Actions, Young Projects Gallery, Los Angeles (2014); Daniel von Sturmer, Columbus Museum of Art, Ohio (2013); Melbourne Now, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne (2013); Time & Vision: New work from Australian artists, The Bargehouse, London (2012); Negotiating this world: Contemporary Australian Art, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne (2012); Set Piece, Site Gallery, Sheffield, United Kingdom (2009); The Object of Things, Australian Pavilion, Venice Biennale, Venice, Italy (2007).
von Sturmer’s work is held held in a number of significant collections, including that of the Gothenburg Museum of Art, Sweden; Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney; Art Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide; Auckland Art Gallery, New Zealand; Australian Centre for the Moving Image, Melbourne; Bendigo Art Gallery, Victoria; Chartwell Collection, New Zealand; Dunedin Public Art Gallery, New Zealand; The Michael Buxton Contemporary Australian Art Collection, Melbourne; Monash University Museum of Art, Melbourne; Museum of Contemporary Art Australia, Sydney; National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne; Newcastle Art Gallery, New South Wales; and Queensland Art Gallery, Brisbane.