Exhibition reviews and comment

Quite by chance last week I happened to be visiting the offices of one of the sponsors of the HIX Award – though I didn’t know this connection in advance. The HIX Award is open to current art students and graduates of the last two years and is aimed at helping with the transition between […]

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A review of the London Korean cultural year 2018

by Philip Gowman 28 December 2018
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Every year at this stage in the year, I look back on the cultural highlights, whether they be live performances, exhibitions, movies or books that I have encountered over the past twelve months. Every year I lament that I’ve been unable to cover everything, that I’m getting slower and that there’s been even more to […]

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Exhibition visit: Nick Bonner’s Made in North Korea

by Philip Gowman 26 October 2018
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When one thinks of North Korean graphic art, images of strident anti-American propaganda posters spring to mind. Fortunately, and in the current climate of reduced tension on the peninsula, the posters that greeted you in the first room of Nick Bonner’s exhibition at the House of Illustration focused less on stirring up national hatred against […]

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8 more reasons to visit Lee Bul: Crashing

by Philip Gowman 17 August 2018
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Lee Bul’s fabulous show at the Hayward Gallery closes this weekend. If you haven’t seen it yet, here are eight more reasons why you should. 1. Park Chung-hee naked OK, a rather sensationalist opener, and not something I ever expected to find myself writing, but yes: suspended from the ceiling are two naked effigies of […]

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Exhibition visit: Lee Bul – Crashing. Pt 2 – Scale of Tongue

by Philip Gowman 6 August 2018
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The most eye-catching work in Lee Bul’s Hayward Gallery exhibition is the giant inflatable zeppelin, its grid of rectangular silver panels echoing the grid of skylights in the Hayward’s newly refurbished upper floor. The work, entitled Willing to be Vulnerable, memorialises the Hindenburg disaster in 1937, when the giant airship, representing a possible future of […]

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Exhibition visit: Lee Bul – Crashing. Pt 1 – Heaven and Earth

by Philip Gowman 30 July 2018
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I thought I had come across most of Lee Bul’s work before, either physically (at Ikon Gallery in Birmingham, 2014 and various gallery visits in Seoul) or through articles and books. But one work in the Hayward Gallery’s solo show caught me by surprise. Heaven and Earth (2007) is a larger-than-life reconstruction of the type […]

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I wonder how many people actually saw the full Halo…

by Philip Gowman 24 July 2018
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As part of the Korea/UK season of cultural collaboration, Kimchi and Chips, a Seoul-based art studio founded by Elliot Woods (UK) and Mimi Son (South Korea) installed a large work entitled Halo in the public space of the Somerset House courtyard for the month of June. In perfect conditions (full sun, no cloud, no breeze), […]

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A look at Hay Joung Hwang’s silver gilt winning LG Eco-City Garden

by Philip Gowman 5 June 2018
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Two years ago at the Chelsea Flower Show Hay Joung Hwang teamed up with LG to showcase how technology can be used to maximise the benefits from an urban garden – from lighting to smart sensors to monitor the moisture and nutrients in the soil. Encouraged by the silver gilt awarded to the garden, the […]

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Exhibition visit: Seung Ae Lee – Becoming

by Philip Gowman 28 May 2018
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Seung Ae Lee won the 2016 Valerie Beston Artists’ Trust Prize for the body of work presented at her Royal College of Art degree show. The award brought with it the opportunity to show her work at Marlborough Fine Art in two brief exhibitions in 2016 and 17. Her solo show at the KCC, Becoming, […]

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Brief exhibition visit: Fragmentality

by 앤서방 14 April 2018
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Fragmentality, at Arthill Gallery in North End Road, is a show featuring two RCA students. Minhee Kim’s works are delicate constructions made from layered paper or hair, using the ‘comfort women’ issue as her theme: Taeho Kim’s works include light and sound installations, as well as works on paper, employing intricate geometric patterns. Keywords: Artists: […]

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Exhibition visit: Juree Kim in Exhibit A, at Anise Gallery

by Philip Gowman 31 March 2018
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Kim Juree’s latest work, London Terraced House, was unveiled at the opening of the current exhibition, Exhibit A, at Anise gallery in Shad Thames. As for her 2017 participation in the British Ceramics Biennial in Stoke, Kim chose a subject relevant to the location of the exhibition: this time a group of typical early Victorian […]

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Exhibition visit: Ceramic Art London at Central St Martins

by Philip Gowman 24 March 2018
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As I was paying a second visit to Nick Bonner’s exhibition at the House of Illustration yesterday I happened almost to trip over a sign pointing to the Ceramic Art London fair, next door at Central St Martins. Needless to say, there were plenty of Koreans exhibiting. This weekend only. Ceramic Art London 23–25 March […]

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Exhibition visit – Collect 2018

by Philip Gowman 19 March 2018
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For the fifth year, the Korean Craft and Design Foundation put on a splendid show at Collect. As in previous years, the stall showcased a range of crafts – from jewellery and lacquer to ceramics and more – with this year the theme being “Meditative Art”. The dramatic ceramic piece entitled Sea by Lee Eun […]

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Lee Ufan’s Relatum – Stage, by the Serpentine

by Philip Gowman 12 March 2018
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“It is our dream come true to work with Lee Ufan in London” enthused Hans Ulrich Obrist at the KCCUK talk which marked the installation of Lee’s Relatum – Stage outside the Serpentine Gallery on 6 February. After Lee’s hugely high-profile project at Versailles in 2014, with such a dramatic backdrop, the siting in a […]

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Exhibition visit: Kim Minjung – The Memory of Process

by Philip Gowman 6 March 2018
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Looking at the image which publicises Kim Minjung’s solo exhibition The Memory of Process at White Cube, you wonder how it is that she came to be branded as a Dansaekhwa artist. The busy, multicoloured concentric circles, like patterns made by raindrops in a psychedelic puddle, are miles away from the austere, minimalist calm that […]

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Made in Korea – the video

by Philip Gowman 28 January 2018
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Kay Aplin of the Ceramic House in Brighton, who masterminded the Korea-UK Made in Korea ceramic collaboration last year, has completed a 20-minute video documentary of the project. Well worth a viewing in full: Please browse Kay’s blog of the whole project including the reciprocal exhibition at the Mullae Art Factory in Seoul. In England, […]

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A Review of London Korean cultural year 2017

by Philip Gowman 1 January 2018
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It feels like it’s been an incredibly busy year, and as I come to write this review I realise that, much more so than in previous years, many of the things that have been memorable I haven’t had time to write about – and maybe won’t. I’ve written separately about the films it was possible […]

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