London Korean Links

Covering things Korean in London and beyond since 2006

Hur Shan: The Door in the Wall — at Gazelli Art House

New work from Hur Shan coming up at Gazelli Art House:

Hur Shan: The Door in the Wall

Exhibition Dates: 30 January – 22 March 2015
Location: Gazelli Art House | 39 Dover Street | London W1S 4NN |
Mon – Fri: 10:00 – 18:00 | Sat: 11:00 – 19:00 | Sun: by appt only

Gazelli Art House presents The Door In The Wall, a solo exhibition of new works by Korean-born, London based sculptor Shan Hur.

Hur Shan: Pillar

In this new series of sculptural work, which includes large-scale graphite renderings, wall sculptures, his signature cracked columns and domestic-size bronze wall pieces, Hur continues his exploration of the significance and historical references retained through traditional objects.

Marked by the discoveries found from cultural evolution and constant transitions, The Door In The Wall engages the viewer and retraces Shan’s origins by incorporating antiquities such as buddhas, bronze knives and traditional Korean chiming cups, obtained from his hometown in South Korea, within these structures. For this exhibition the artist uses a variety of materials such as Zelkova wood – a traditional Korean tree commonly used for bonsai – graphite, bronze and concrete, to embark the audience in an excavation of Urban recollection. The works located on the ground floor directly reference Shan’s fascination with cultural evolution, as his graphite renderings and concrete wall sculptures reference both a 9.7 meter ship hull, unearthed at Ground Zero’s construction site in New York1, and the shoes found within, believed to belong to the passengers of the vessel. Composed of Zelkova wood, the second wall sculpture is more of a literal interpretation of a ‘door in a wall’, and refers to a recently discovered wooden door like panel, dating back from the Saxon period2.

The Door In The Wall examines the conjunction and meanings we attach to our surroundings, inspired by engravings of Buddha the artist came across in the mountains of Namsan, Gyeongju, Shan’s hometown. The wall sculptures and broken pillars located on the first floor of the gallery, conceal unexpected items of treasure, and underline the importance of prehistory. Throughout the exhibition Shan questions the relationships between the cracks and the space, by including the supporting foundation structures of the gallery, such as the pillars within the work. By incorporating found objects inside the pillars and questioning the physical space of the gallery his interventions disrupt the viewer’s perception of the gallery space and the role it plays in showcasing the work.

Hur Shan (b Seoul, Korea) works and lives in London. He holds an MFA from Slade (2010) and a BFA in Sculpture from Seoul National University (2007), His work is held in the collection of the British Art Collection and some recent awards include “Royal British Society of Sculptors Bursary Award”, London (2013); Oriel Davies Open 2012 Newtown Wales, UK Finalist; “The Open West”, Cheltenham, Gloucester UK 1st Award; “Art Catlin” Finalist (2011). His work is included in the forthcoming exhibition at the Korean Museum, and he has participated in recent exhibitions “A New Column for Manchester”, Manchester University (2014); “L’age d’or”, Aando Fine Art, Berlin (2013) among others.

The title of the exhibition The Door in the Wall is inspired by the 1949 novel by Marguerite de Angeli that received the Newbery Medal for excellence in American Children’s literature in 1950.  The term “door in the wall” means if one keeps trying and never gives up, they’ll find a way to break through and to succeed. A quote from the book reads: “If thou followeth a wall far enough, there must be a door in it.”

  1. The ship was found in an area which was part of the Hudson River in the late 18th century, it’s not clear if the ship sank, or if it was positioned in the river bottom to act as landfill for Manhattan. []
  2. Repair work at St Andrew’s Church, Boxford in Berkshire (2010) has revealed one of the earliest intact timber windows in the country – a frame complete with a hinged wooden panel dating from the Saxon period, the window is thought to pre-date 1066. []

(automatically generated) Read LKL’s review of this event here.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.