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The Ways of Folding Space and Flying: the 2015 Korean pavilion at Venice

This year’s Korean Pavilion at Venice features work by Moon Kyungwon and Jeon Joonho:

The Ways of Folding Space & Flying

A project by Moon Kyungwon & Jeon Joonho
Exhibition Period: May 9 – November 22, 2015
Opening hours: Tue – Sun | 10 am – 6 pm
(Closed on Mondays, except May 11, June 1 and November 16)

Ways of Folding Space and Flying

The Korean artistic duo Moon Kyungwon & Jeon Joonho will present a new site-specific work in the Korean Pavilion at the 56th International Art Exhibition of la Biennale di Venezia. Working in collaboration since 2009, the duo has developed a critically acclaimed body of work, including the film installation News from Nowhere, which was first shown at the dOCUMENTA (13) in 2012.

The Ways of Folding Space & Flying, a new multi-channel film installation, explores an archaeological quest into human civilization that interweaves history with visions of the future as told through a future-retrospective narrative. It also alludes to the institutional structure and historic evolution of the Venice Biennale, the scale and influence of which have been acquired within a shifting socio-political landscape.

The title of the project stems from the Korean words chukjibeop and bihaengsul. Originating from Taoist practice, chukjibeop means a hypothetical method of contracting physical distance. Bihaengsul refers to a supernatural power to levitate, fly and travel across time and space. They reflect the human desire to surpass the physical and perceived barriers and structures that bind us, despite the apparent absurdity of such imaginings.

The project is part of an ongoing inquiry for Moon & Jeon to make sense of what they perceive as a fundamental function of art in our increasingly uncertain and precarious environment. Instead of trying to provide a definitive thesis, the artists propose ways of imagining the future where existing notions of art and creativity may no longer be relevant. As with the seemingly illogical and ludicrous concepts of chukjibeop and bihaengsul, for them, art is a crucial yet curiously unexplainable facet of complex human desires that compel us to imagine, dream, wonder and challenge.

Sook-Kyung Lee
Commissioner & Curator
Korean Pavilion, 56th International Art Exhibition, la Biennale di Venezia

Exhibition credits

THE WAYS OF FOLDING SPACE & FLYING: A Project by Moon Kyungwon & Jeon Joonho
Organized by: Arts Council Korea and Fondazione la Biennale di Venezia
Commissioner & Curator: Sook-Kyung Lee
Exhibition Coordinator: Diana Eunjee Kim
Korean Pavilion Manager & Architect: Eun Jeong Kim
Korean Pavilion Coordinator & Architect: Jun Hui Byun
Web Design: Kyung Yong Lim | Jongmin Ahn
Front Page Illustration: Andrew Fairclough of Kindred Studio

Commissioner and Artists

SOOK-KYUNG LEE is curator, lecturer and writer, and is currently Research Curator at Tate Research Centre: Asia-Pacific and the Curator of Asia Pacific Acquisitions Committee at Tate, London. Lee was previously Exhibitions & Displays Curator at Tate Liverpool, and curated a number of exhibitions including Nam June Paik, Doug Aitken: The Source and Threshholds (as part of Liverpool Biennale 2012).

MOON KYUNGWON & JEON JOONHO’s recent artistic endeavors center on News from Nowhere, a collaboration project that focuses on creating an interdisciplinary platform. News from Nowhere series was first presented at Kassel dOCUMENTA 13 (2012) which expanded as a site-specific project as it travelled to the Sullivan Galleries, School of the Art Institute of Chicago (2013). The next edition of the project will unveil at the Migros Museum für Gegenwartskunst, Zurich in August 2015. The duo has participated in other notable group exhibitions including Fukuoka Triennale, Fukuoka (2014); Beyond and Between, Leeum Samsung Museum of Art, Seoul (2014); Singapore Art Biennale, Singapore (2013); Home Works 6, Beirut Art Center, Beirut (2013); Ullens Centre for Contemporary Art, Beijing (2013); and Gwangju Biennale, Gwangju (2012).

MOON & JEON were the recipient of Multitude Art Prize by Multitude Foundation (2013); Noon Award at Gwangju Biennale (2012); 2012 Korea Artist Prize, co-organized by the National Museum of Modern & Contemporary Art, Korea and SBS Foundation (2012).

MOON KYUNGWON lives and works in Korea. She received an M.F.A. from California Institute of the Arts, U.S. and M.F.A. & B.F.A. from Ewha Womans University, Korea. Selected solo exhibitions include PROMISE PARK, Yamaguchi Center for Art and Media, Yamaguchi (2014); GREENHOUSE, Gallery Hyundai, Seoul (2010); and Fukuoka Asian Art Museum, Fukuoka (2004). Notable group exhibitions include Art and Collective Intelligence, Yamaguchi Center for Arts and Media, Yamaguchi (2013); Talin International Film Festival, Talin (2011); Plastic Garden, Minsheng Art Museum, Shanghai (2010); A Different Similarity, Central Istanbul, Istanbul (2009); and Now Jump_Opening Show, Nam June Paik Art Center, Yongin (2008).

JEON JOONHO divides his time between Busan and Seoul, Korea. He received an M.A. from Chelsea College of Art and Design, U.K. and a B.F.A. from Dongeui University, Korea. Selected solo exhibitions include His Niche, Gallery Hyundai, Seoul (2014); Bless You, SCAI the Bathhouse, Tokyo (2009); Hyper Realism, Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, Paris (2008), Arario Gallery, Cheonan (2008) and Perry Rubenstein Gallery, New York (2007). Notable group exhibitions include Lifelike, Walker Art Center, Minneapolis (2012); Yokohama Triennale, Yokohama (2011); Your Bright Future, LACMA, LA and The Museum of Fine Art, Houston (2009); Metamorphosis, Espace Culturel Louis Vuitton, Paris (2008); and All About Laughter, Mori Art Museum, Tokyo (2007).

The Ways of Folding Space & Flying

The film leads us to a distant time in the future. Lying deep under water, the City of Venice that we used to know, along with the other glories of past civilization, no longer exists. The only visible vestige of the Giardini’s rich history is the Korean Pavilion—the last national pavilion to have been established within the garden and at its highest point. The site no longer serves as a place for art. The pavilion is now a laboratory for archaeological investigation of the past civilization. Here within this site, our protagonist awakes to consciousness.


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