In 2016, I was a resident at Haslla Art World Museum in Gangneung, South Korea. My chosen studio was a reflecting pool in the mountains created from runoff water from the nearby cave.
Over a three week period, I fabricated a stage by manually moving each rock by hand. Through active meditation & a performance of offering for the mountain, negative emotions were released & positive energy filled the remaining space in my spirit. The photographic series that developed references a union of symbolism & metaphors from the East & the West.
Pieta incorporates classic Renaissance depictions of Mary & Venus but with a female Korean soldier replacing Jesus. Ventiko, written in Hangul, is on her breast, suggesting the intertwined roles of mother, goddess, soldier, savior & victim.
In Deungmyeongnakgasa, I mirror the pose of a young Buddha depicted on a wall painting in the temple of the same name down the road. In my hand are two pine cones, referencing Gangneung the Pine City where the works were made. As the brush is extinguished, so are my negative emotions that I brought to the mountain. My other finger points to the heavens where my spirit is on fire & desiring to go. The red material used in making Hanboks, coupled with my recurring Venus character, are intended to symbolize the “ideal woman”.
Other works incorporate the Pearl Diver & Puppet Master characters: both inspired by the interconnectedness of all living creatures & our inevitable transformation & rebirth.
After the residency, cinematographer Jin Youl Lim and producer Hye Young Chyun and I filmed
꿈을 깨어 (Waking Dream) in Yogmaland in Seoul in one night. This was my first art film, and premiered at PULSE PLAY in Miami 2017 and won best Experimental Film in the 2018 Women's Cinemaker Berlin Biennale.
Trailer is below.