The last time I saw some of Minho Kwon’s work was in one of the KCC’s Call for Artists exhibitions, back in December 2008. So it’s good to see a solo show coming up at Anise Gallery near Tower Bridge:
New Works by Minho Kwon
Anise Gallery, 27 June – 20 July
13a Shad Thames | London | SE1 2PU | www.anisegallery.co.uk
Thurs – Sun: 12pm – 5pm | Mon – Wed: By appointment
Minho Kwon’s spectacularly detailed drawings are a result of a combination of factors; the regimented structure that surrounded him whilst growing up in Seoul; his exposure to architecture at an early age and his interest in the economic history of Korea. The result is all encompassing; intricate drawings filled with political debate, questions of modernism and, most fundamentally, an in depth analysis of Korean culture.
Minho completed his postgraduate degree at the RCA in 2013. Over the past year, since moving back to Korea, the core influences on his work have clearly strengthened. As he strives to understand the balance of culture in Korea, his work has begun to take on humanitarian qualities. Everyday buildings become his subject matter, as opposed to the immense mythical structures that his degree work focussed on. His exquisite imagination brings the history and people of these buildings to life. Entire stories are recollected as the organic meets the mechanic and the nuts and bolts of our existence are literally revealed.
Minho’s new work expands on his fascination with the ever encroaching western influence on Korean culture and economical development. In ‘Mansudae Design Centre’ Minho visualizes an imaginary renovation scheme of this North Korean parliamentary building. This large hexaptych gradually develops into a futuristic post modernist building akin to those designed by leading Western architects, emphasising the controversial impact the west has on Korean culture. Cultural violation in opposition to cultural progression.
The graphic ‘Happy Birthday’ similarly depicts the scenery of socio-economic effects that the West has had on Korea and particularly gives prominence to the period of post-war growth. His classical architectural drawing style offers more than a means to and end, it acts metaphorically, unveiling the imaginative scope of the work as a whole. Furthermore, by adopting the traditional architectural protocol of plans, sections and elevations, hidden elements and possibilities are revealed to the viewer.
Minho Kwon uniquely combines the mechanical with the organic, confronts powerful political issues and transforms pencil lines into captivating and mesmerising scenarios. Minho’s desire to communicate his beliefs through visual art has evolved and his new work embodies this deeper than ever before.