A bit of trivia which I picked up when visiting HADA Contemporary’s current mini retrospective of Gwon Osang’s work.
Gwon’s Deodorant Type series consists of 3-D sculptures made up of 2-D photographs of his models pasted on to a basic human form and then finished with high-gloss resin. It is the series of work for which he is probably best known. Originally the works were created following a painstaking shoot in which Gwon would photograph his model from every angle so that he could create the resulting 3-D sculpture. In more recent work such photographic images have been culled from the internet – for example in his 2010 likeness of David Hockney.
Gwon’s work clearly caught the eye of British rock group Keane. If you look closely at the album cover for their third album, Perfect Symmetry (2008), you’ll notice the tell-tale shiny finish from Gwon’s Deodorant Type series. To create the cover, Keane commissioned their own life size sculptures from Gwon. According to Creative Review, Gwon took up to 3,000 snaps per band member during the course of a five-day London photoshoot, and then created the sculptures back in Seoul. It’s a shame that the resulting sculptures get so little space on the cover.
According to The Guardian, Keane’s frontman Tom Chaplin said: “They’re life-size (a bit bigger, actually) – spooky, stunning, hyper-real and funny, all at the same time.”
As noted in the comment section below, the project was put together by UNION Gallery, one of the very early pioneers in bringing contemporary Korean artists to London.
Thanks to Sun at HADA Contemporary for the info.
Gwon Osang’s exhibition at HADA Contemporary entitled Postmodern Times continues until 31st May