Jihyun Jung

Dawn Breaks, Seoul

Art Sonje Center presents “Dawn Break, Seoul,” an exhibition by Jewyo Rhii & Jihyun Jung from March 24th to May 14th 2017. The collaboration of the two artists began at the Queens Museum in 2015 and was featured in the Gwangju Biennale 2016. Following these previous iterations, Art Sonje Center is pleased to offer an opportunity for the artists to further develop their third project through an expansive exhibition.

The title “Dawn Breaks” derives from the English expression, “Night falls, dawn breaks,” which is deployed here as a metaphorical proposition for the peculiar conditions under which the two artists work. Dawn may be understood as the time during which the authoritatively regulated language of society is asleep, and countless words that have not clearly pronounced become freed.  It is a liminal time—between consciousness and its opposite—through which the artists find a suitable corollary for the space of exploring without restrictions, or being reduced to the rational structures of the day.

The first performance by the two artists of different generations began asking a question “what were you doing in 1979?” on the stage where the objects and images made by the artists were placed. The conversation, which developed while the artists brought the objects into play, humorously unraveled their childhood fascination with certain physical materials. The conversation that prompted the recollection of their memories and mutual interest in the hand-made laid out “an innocent timeline of making” in turn.

More recently, Rhii and Jung altered the format of their performance from a parade to one in which the movements of objects are laid within a concrete timeline for a specific function. They also invited fellow artists and makers to place or hang their poems, paintings, and sculptures on the apparatuses and activate them creating a series of narratives.

In the exhibition, the objects become like a multitude of small theaters, each filling out the space with its physicality while functioning as a basic component of the theater, and serving as a mechanism for weaving floating images into a certain narrative. These objects move along a trajectory strategically set by the artists while they transport and transform the narratives.

The exhibition Dawn Breaks, Seoul presents installations and drawings, which uncover the narratives embedded within each performance-object and render explicit the connections between the performance and the core attributes of materials. Workshops held during the exhibition period will disclose the process of building a performance that originates from a plot generated by the use of the objects.