"Images from lights are the driving force of my life as an artist"

홍기인 기자l승인2020.12.21l수정2020.12.21 14:20

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▲ Artist Jo Sang-eun

The colors of the lights spreading gently is similar to the air flowing. It is as if the artist is showing how she reflects the story of the lights within her inner world. Jo's works are expressions of the process to find ideal images archived in the world beyond and the myriad pieces of images appear like flashes. Her studio packed up with canvas makes us feel her painful endeavor on her artistic zeal. 

Artist Jo Sang-eun is famous for her indulgence in flow of lights and their dynamic mobility. She started painting at the age of 7 and has walked the single path for the last 32 years. <Space of Flow> and <Light Flowing World> are two of her representative works where she launched a journey to seek new images on ever moving landscapes of lights. 

Experiencing lights and materializing them on the canvas for her is a process of thinking about life, of formative experiment, and of visual study and development. 

In earlier period, Jo focused on revival themed on landscape of lights. From 2009, she focused on ontology in line with limited life on earth which she saw through lights that brighten all living things in the world. From 2014, in which she started a doctoral course at Hongik University, she focused on dynamic images based on floating lights and their mobility. In other words, she made a progress from revival (1989-2005) to life and death (2009-2012). 

The year 2009 in particular is the period she started to build identity of her works and up to 2012 she gave in-depth thoughts on life and death. Also during these periods, she paid attention to ascent and descent of dynamic images alongside various compositional trials of the canvas. It was after 2014, however, that she opened her eye to new visual possibilities in the world of images that move by lights. 

"Lights flash in our lives. If we give a thought to them, we can have various views and points about lights. This is the border on which we observe the very source of artistic inspiration which in fact is abundant in our daily lives" says Jo.

In her works <Flowing Space-Life and Death> and <Flowing Space-Travel of Lights>, Jo melted her conception of lights into strong images of life. The former is 3 meter big in size and Jo deepened her study on life and death in connection with dynamic mobility where marvelous lights of life are floating continuously in our daily lives. The latter, on the other hand, represents her understanding of the world through ever moving lights in which she makes a catch of images from invisible world.

From the first day of January 2021, Jo is holding her 9th solo exhibition at Red·L Gallery under the theme 'Endless Journey of Lights'. This one month long exhibition is to display 26 of her works including some of her noteworthy works:

<Moving Space of Lights> delivers images of flowing lights and their dynamic mobility we can meet in our daily lives. <Space of Flowing no.03> delivers visualization of mobility motivated on landscape of Christmas. <Flowing Space-Into the Lights> delivers the world of ever changing lights co-existing in the past and the present. <Future of Night> delivers static movement of lights motivated on dark space and time. 

Jo layered upon layered the paint to raise density of images on the 2 dimensional canvas and it is highly praiseworthy that she realized both the landscapes and traces of lights between the borders of visibility and invisibility with dynamic power.

"Images from lights are the driving force of my life as an artist. I want to make them warm and sparkle and I want to journey beyond the limitation of my works so that I can communicate with the people for better and for more touching." 

Jo's works received positively at K-Auction online. 

▲ 흐름의 공간-삶과 죽음, 2014~2017, Oil on canvas, 193.9×336.2cm

홍기인 기자  forum1004@naver.com
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