About the Exhibition
KCCUK and Locus+ are delighted to present Jewyo Rhii’s exhibition, Love Your Depot, marking her nomination as ‘2020 Artist of the Year’ - KCCUK’s major annual award programme.
Part of an ongoing project which awarded Rhii the 2019 Korea Artist Prize for her show at the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (MMCA), Seoul, the exhibition at KCCUK has been reconstituted into a multi-purpose, multi-dimensional presentation. Showcasing a combination of a physical storage space for artworks and a workspace for creative activities, Rhii also brings the show to the digital realm by creating an accompanying online platform .
Modular steel structures are aligned in a way that surrounds the central exhibition space, reminiscing the formation often seen in an industrial warehouse. Though it is not a pile of boxes and or industrial hardware that sits within the firm metal frames. Instead, we are met with an array of paintings and drawings that hang from adjustable racks, and fragmented sculptures judiciously positioned on the tiered shelving units. Designed as a prototype storage space for the artist’s work, Love Your Depot acts as an experimental system which belies the conventional norms of an archive by both housing and exhibiting artworks within a single compounded space. Here, Rhii disrupts the traditional art world cycle by proposing a new lifespan for works of art beyond museum cabinets and archives. Foregrounding the intersections between public and private spaces and those liminal spaces which lie between the two, Rhii’s work exposes what often remains hidden behind gallery walls.
Presenting a selection of her artworks previously archived in London, Rhii negates the practical, and potentially costly issue many artists’ face when choosing whether to keep or dispose of their works of art following an exhibition – a question particularly pertinent for younger artists whose exhibitions may span just days. By inviting a group of emerging artists to utilise the space as a platform for creative performances, Love Your Depot unfolds as a collaborative and participatory project – eschewing the notion of the exhibition as the climax of the life of an artwork.
Beyond KCCUK’s gallery space, Love Your Depot is also presented by way of an online platform. Reflecting upon the traditions of artistic practice to rely on the physicality of an artwork, Rhii challenges this concept by expanding the exhibition to the digital sphere. Creating both a physical and virtual exhibition, that emcompasses the notions of a place for establishing new collaborations and reigniting older relationships, an artwork storage as well as a space to flourish creative activities, Rhii, as critic Charles Esche states “builds conditions in which she can operate without total dependency on the art system”.
Following the London exhibition, Rhii will continue her project through an online presentation, developed in collaboration with Locus+ and The Globe Gallery situated in Newcastle upon Tyne, with more details to be announced. The project is curated by Jaemin Cha (KCCUK), Jon Bewley and Jonty Tarbuck (Locus+), and Rashida Davison (The Globe Gallery).
Link to the online preview down below
For all who missed our exhibition, scan the code below for the virtual tour of Jewyo Rhii's LoVE YoUR DEPoT.
About the artist
Jewyo Rhii (b.1971) currently lives and works in Seoul. From 1998 – 2003 Rhii’s artistic practice was manifested in the form of books. Publishing three art books during this period - featuring photography, humorous drawings and other forms of art making - they focused on the provisional, urgent efforts by people to improve the physical and mental environment of our everyday lives. Rhii now engages across many exhibition activities, working in response to the locations, spaces and the events she encounters. Having lived abroad alongside many different cultures, her interests are now rooted in the ephemeral; she creates objects with temporary materials and quick drawings that deal with the insecurity and vulnerability of an individual existence.
Exhibiting internationally, selected solo exhibitions include at: The Showroom, London (2017); Art Sonje Center, Seoul (2017); Galerie Ursula Walbröl, Düsseldorf (2015); and the Queens Museum, New York (2014). Rhii’s work has also been included in group exhibitions at the Gwangju Biennale (2016); South Korea; the Museum für Moderne Kunst, Frankfurt (2014); the Kunstmuseum Basel (2013); and the Palais de Tokyo, Paris (2012), amongst others.
As an organisation Locus+ have an extensive track record of working in the arts and cultural sector, both in the UK and abroad to produce innovative and risk-taking projects. Locus+ was established in Newcastle upon Tyne in 1993 and has since delivered 142 projects, published 37 artists’ books with world-wide distribution and managed the biggest time-based visual arts archive in Europe containing thousands of slides, video and ephemera (now hosted at the University of Newcastle). Locus+ pride themselves on commissioning, producing, and delivering exciting and ambitious artists’ projects that push the envelope of expectation and practice that have a meaningful resonance with the public. All projects, by their very nature are socially engaging, diverse, conceptual and context related. Locus+ supports artists at early stages in their careers as well as enabling experienced and established artists to expand the horizons and practice.
For the past 25 years Globe Gallery has offered valuable exhibition and learning opportunities for emerging and established artists, furthering Newcastle’s connectivity with the arts by bringing national and international artists to the North East. Globe has occupied seven contemporary arts venues, testament to the collective efforts of a dynamic and diverse team of people committed to delivering powerful experiences and opportunities through involvement with art. Globe has worked consistently to engage people from all backgrounds by forging relationships with contemporary art and is committed to embedding into the community. Partnering with local authorities, national charities, universities, and commercial partners has enabled Globe to create engagement opportunities for a wide and diverse audience, particularly for those from marginalised, disadvantaged groups and individuals. Globe embraces the challenges of today's society and is committed to delivering innovative and challenging experiences through their exhibition and events programmes that stimulate diversity of thought, experience, and practice.
Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism
Korea Arts Management Service
Fund for Korean Art Abroad 2020-2021
Amanda Wilkinson Gallery