London Korean Links

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Yva Jung: Monday Morning – at Departure Lounge, Luton

Yva Jung, who won the KCCUK’s 2015 Open Call, has been developing further the ideas explored in her 2015 exhibition. We look forward to the upcoming solo exhibition at Departure Lounge.

Yva Jung: Monday Morning

30 May – 13 July 2019
Departure Lounge | Storefront | 64 Bute Street | Luton LU1 2EY |
Open Thursday – Saturday 1pm– 6pm, and by appointment
Exhibition opening reception: Thursday 30 May 6-8pm All welcome
Closing event: Saturday 13 July 1-3pm All welcome

Yva Jung: Morning Dew on Monday Morning (2017, C Print)
Yva Jung: Morning Dew on Monday Morning (2017, C Print)

Artist Yva Jung is fascinated by planetary rhythms, the cycles of life and death and the stories we generate in life.  Monday Morning, her first UK solo exhibition, brings together photographs, video pieces and sculptures exploring the linguistic roots of ‘Monday’ meaning “day of the moon”. Jung also examines notions about the moon, its phases and cycles and the parallel rhythms of female life.

Using fleeting and temporary forms, notably the natural phenomenon of morning dew, Jung examines uprooted-ness and loss through a profoundly poetic lens.

Jung became fascinated by morning dew after she moved to rural Hertfordshire. Every Monday (moon-day) for a year she set out to harvest and permanently record this fleeting and impermanent natural phenomenon. Using a variety of tools – a syringe, a spoon, a surgical tube – she gathered 52 samples, a performance which was captured and recorded in the photographic and video works Morning Dew on Monday Morning (2017-19).

In advance of this exhibition, Jung bartered sculptures made from harvested morning dew for stories and experiences shared by Luton’s market-goers in a remarkable piece of performance art in the town’s Mall.  Jung uses the stories collected at her performance as inspiration for a series of new works on paper, recording the transactions between the artist and her “customers” and the exchange of dew for stories. An illustrated booklet recording the transactions will be given away to visitors at the closing event on Saturday 13 July.

The exhibition also includes sculpture Half Moon Piece (2018) which contains 52 test tubes marking the 52 Mondays in the year – each tube filled with water to reflect the fullness of the moon on that Monday. The curved upper surfaces of the liquid – called menisci – mimic the rising and falling tides linked to the moon’s cycles.  Jung’s convex rounded wooden sculptures reflect the shape and orbit of the moon. The imprinted demi-sphere in the wood also references the pregnant or female form again making visible the parallels between the female cycle and the rhythms of the lunar calendar.

First Day of Spring (2019) was created on 20 March this year – the Spring equinox – and explores the notion of loss at a common point of optimism in the year.  This video piece captures a sense of absence through a collection of words taken from newspaper obituaries, each month for a year. The newness of the morning dew is contrasted with the gravity of death while the fleeting nature of dew, and perhaps life, is contrasted with the enduring burdens of grief.

Based in Hertfordshire, South Korean artist Yva Jung‘s visual art practice is time-based, site-specific, performative, interdisciplinary and evolutionary. Trained as a painter, she now includes sculpture, photography, moving image and improvised encounters in her work. She has recently completed a PhD in Fine Art at the Slade School of Art and has exhibited widely across the world.

“My work starts when I observe something in (or out of) the world around me – something mundane in a new context. Whether it is distant as the moon, ordinary as morning dew or prosaic as Monday, I then set out to find tangible materials or imagery that reflect and rhyme with these observations. I often experiment with different media and forms of documentation. I invite audiences to see and respond to the work. I log the responses and from them generate a new, related or otherwise, collection of pieces capturing the responses of the audience.”

Matthew Shaul, Director of Departure Lounge, said: “We are delighted to host Yva’s new and deeply poetic project at Departure Lounge. In a world in which everything happens at high speed her work asks us to take time out, to be mindful of and to value the rhythms of life and our planet, how we interact with it and each other, and the stories that are part of this. The exhibition marks the beginning of a new and more permanent phase in Departure Lounge’s development – as we emerge from the hugely successful ‘As You Change’ Project, we will continue to offer local, national and international artists meaningful opportunities to engage with our town and its stories, as Yva is doing with Monday Morning.”

This project is organised by Departure Lounge in collaboration with Luton Culture and is generously supported by Arts Council England and Revoluton Arts.

There will be a one-day artists’ writing workshop with Akerman Daly on Saturday 29 June – please contact Departure Lounge for further details.


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