Monday, November 10, 2008

Lego in Robson

LEGO is such an integral part of our lives even till today. It’s the toy that many people perceives timeless and worth keeping. Lego is our ultimate childhood memory. Lego is our basic toy that satisfied our young and playful creative and innovative imagination. It is not easy to deny it, but we never really grew out of Lego.
In this collaborative project with Minji Kim, called “Lego in Robson”, we were inspired by Lego blocks and created two blocks of Lego in red and yellow. Since Lego has clean surfaces and lines, building Lego was one of the biggest challenges that we had faced while assembling the facsimile Lego. We used two large cardboard boxes as basic structure and added round cylinders on the top of each one; this was the lightest and most effective way to build the sculptures. To make the rough surface of the cardboard boxes smoother and neater, we glued thick bristle boards on each side of the blocks. And then, we evenly sprayed colourful and glossy enamel paints (red and yellow) to mimic the real quality of plastic.
After we completed making the two large blocks of Lego, we pulled the blocks with a yellow rope around them along on Robson St. and Granville St. By carrying Lego while wearing semi-formal suits in the heart of the city, Minji and I could visually articulate the fact that we as students still maintain childish and playful aspects in our unconscious. Also, the walking with Lego blocks along fancy streets is a visual representation that even adults still carry a childish and playful side within them.
At the beginning, we were very self-conscious about carrying big brightly painted Lego blocks down the streets and could not walk comfortably. However, the encouraging and cheerful comments from people really inspired us to be more comfortable and confident in front of crowds. Unfortunately, a few people expressed some negative comments about us which were a bit hurtful, since we did not expect to hear criticism from people. As time passed by, we gradually did not mind about getting stared at and people taking pictures of us. We documented this act of pulling Lego through downtown by getting help from our friend to take pictures. We specifically asked him to consider the Golden Rectangle while taking shots of us, giving a clearer emphasis on our Lego. Again, we want to transmit the main message that although people have grown and appear as adults, our minds are still young and fresh.
This is our first attempt to produce a piece of performance art in streets and it seemed a little terrifying to give it a try. Since collaboration is about respecting and acknowledging each other’s ideas, we had to consequently make some compromises and adjust ideas to make us satisfied with the result of the project. In the end, we learned a valuable lesson that every idea that seems to be overwhelming for one person to do can be seamlessly developed and effectively produced when working as collaboration.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

untiled - white plastic cups

Attracted by Donovan’s unusual artistic style of accumulation, I incorporated common everyday object to create an incredibly organic sculpture that is suggestive in a shape of a single cell organism.
I basically wrapped my body with small white plastic cups to create a visual representation of a single cell organism such as an amoeba. Also, it has a dynamic relationship with myself since it is wearable and provides me a small resting place from a fast-paced world. The white cups around my body suggest my purity and sense of innocence and seem to embrace me and protect my body. By one wearing this sculptural piece, it covers up one’s ethnicity and identity, breaking down the racial barrier that exists among people.
This whole project required an extensive amount of energy and was a very time consuming project. Not only did I have to pay great attention to assembling each cup, I consistently did try on the sculpture to get a general fit of the sculpture onto my body, while also considering the aesthetic appeal of this organic structure. Since each cup has a thick round edge and a depth, the repetitive use of cups created a strong visual pattern and volume that are reminiscent of a beehive, allowing me to learn the power of accumulation using same materials. Ultimately, this project has allowed me to appreciate the prominent artist’s work and view it as a stepping stone to find my own artistic style and interest in contemporary art.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

One4One - a group juried exhibition at Maple Ridge Art Gallery

Wastebasket 2 Go, mixed media 2008

My recent mixed media sculpture, Wastebasket 2 Go, is now on display at Maple Ridge Gallery, located at 11944 Haney Place, Maple Ridge. It was selected for One 4 One, a group juried exhibition organized by Maple Ridge Gallery. The subtext of the title One 4 One intends to convery that there is "one piece of art for everyone." This exhibit is being held from October 25 to December 6, 2008.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

BY THE BOOK - Creative Interactions with Literature

Port Moody Art Center
(photos by Jason V. , from Alcuin Society's photostream)

BY THE BOOK : Creative Interactions with Literature has been on display in the month of October 2008 at the Port Moody Library, City Hall and the Port Moody Art Center. This show was organized by Artist Circle of ArtsConnect, the Tri-City Arts Council, in order to celebrate Canadian Library Month, and enhance creative interactions with books. Path to Maturity, 3-D mixed media sculpture was exhibited at Port Moody Art Centre during October.

new artwork

new artwork

new artwork

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Melting Monument

While I was waiting the candles for my first candle wax artwork, Celebration of Maturity, to melt down, I created another artwork called Melting Monument which is an abstract form of monument for melting icebergs. I created an iceberg structure with chicken wire and then placed approximately 15 white candle sticks in the small gaps between the wires. As the candles in the structure melt down, they created a huge island of candle wax as if to symbolize the melting ice due to global warming. With this particular artwork, I could capture the current stage of life of an iceberg at the North Pole. The candle residue also created some interesting and intriguing patterns on chicken wire. Also, I hope the hollowness of its structure cautions the viewers that we as the members of society need to protect our nature and preserve it well so that our future generation can enjoy its beauty.
Also, I realized about the importance and preciousness of preserving nature. I learned a valuable message that once we have destroyed it, we can not bring it back.

new artwork

Celebration of Maturity

I have created two pieces of artwork that represent the life cycle of human and nature, incorporating candle wax as a medium, which also has a strong message of time passing in itself. As the candles melt they create icicles of wax, constantly shifting and totally changing in shape. Seeing an art work by Barbara Nasto, I immediately found myself emotionally moved by the three dimensional texture and the organic patterns from liquid candle wax residue. The first piece of wax sculpture, called Celebration of Maturity is my own interpretation of a big birthday cake for celebrating 18 years of life using 18 candles. Each candle symbolizes each year that I have lived on earth. I have selected two clear plastic containers and a glass jar as a base for the melting candles. Moreover, the colours of the candles, mostly warm colours, represent my burning passion for art throughout my 18th years of life so far.
When creating this, my biggest challenge was to control the amount of wax on a specific desirable place for aesthetic reasons. To solve this problem, I used a lighter to have control of the wax residue falling on my work. The use of the lighter effectively sped up the progress of the melting candles. Waiting the candles to completely melt down required my patience and I felt as if I was testing my endurance. This project offered me quite time of meditation to look back at my 18 years of life and what I have been through to finally become an adult.

Repetition - 3 D

Wastebasket 2 Go

Further to my previous artwork “Waste 2 Go” visualizing my favorite drink, Milk 2 Go, the inspiration for this artwork came from a trash can from which I collected empty bottles, cans, and cups for recycling. While I usually discard these items, I want to reinterpret their value and meaning. Creating and gathering my own bottles and cans was my artistic version of the mass production and consumption around us. The disposable objects people habitually dump can be recreated as beautiful and visually pleasing structural objects. To create contemporary visual effects, I used wire mesh. The shiny metallic reflection and flashy appearance as well as see-through effect also imply our current futuristic design trend.

new artwork

Going Back to Nature (repeating multiples 0809)

This particular artwork, called “Going back to Nature” represents a log. Since I was given a limitation of materials I could use for this project of “Repetition Multiples”. I had to push myself to find the characteristics and limits of paper. In the thinking process, I focused on the origin of the abundance of office papers that we use on a daily basis for printing and work purposes. These papers are from trees in a forest and I was trying to bring fragile and flat sheets of paper back into its natural form. To make this office paper stayed, solid and firm, I started to roll sheets of papers diagonally. This method was the far most efficient and fastest way to make paper solid and rigid.
Just a few months ago, I had a chance to meet a Canadian artist, Michelle Allard, in a Buschlen Mowatt scholarship program at Arts Umbrella. Similar to this project of “Working with Many”, Michelle had numerous rolled florescent paper piled to create an illusion of hills. This gave me the source of inspiration for this project that simple objects like rolled paper can hold a very powerful aesthetic value. Her work was mostly a labour based artwork, requiring many volunteers to roll papers.
The log that I have made with hundreds of rolled papers contains age rings to recreate the essence of a cross-section of cut logs. Also, rolling hundreds of sheets by myself was a such a overwhelming experience that it took me over 10 hours to complete the project. Although numerous hours has been put into this piece of artwork in the midst of a tight schedule, I have no regrets about spending so much time on it. For the next project, “Evolving Duration Project”, I would like to create an art piece that can be made within several hours.

new artwork

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

grotesque 2008

new artwork

Waterfall 2007 charcoal, pastel & oil

This is a drawing and painting of a rural landscape. I accentuate the texture of the rock and braches and the contrast between glowing water and the rock. I derived pure enjoyment from creating this work because this was my chance to explore different materilas including charcoal, pastel, and oil paints and experiment with various textures to express the serenity and purity of nature.