The Korean Cultural Centre UK (KCCUK) and Art Center Nabi co-presents ‘Our Friendly Neighbours’, an exhibition featuring recent works by Yiyun Kang, the artist duo Bang & Lee and Jinjoon Lee.
‘‘Our Friendly Neighbours’ focuses on the connection between art, technology, and the environment. During the enforced isolations of the Covid-19 era, the understanding of the neighbourhood increasingly expanded beyond immediate borders to encompass the global and non-human, this exhibition questions the role of technology as a powerful tool for both connection and control. Reflecting on global human expansion, the causes of the continuing climate crisis and the pandemic response, the exhibition hones in on the virtual ecologies made and the artificial perceptions of space and time as communities collectively experience the destruction of the planet. Exploring the themes of commonality, harmony, and empathy, the exhibition asks us to consider both our neighbourhood and how we can form shared value systems in today’s secular, ever increasingly individualist society.
Yiyun Kang’s immersive audio-visual installation, Finite 2.0, reﬂects the ﬁnitude of the man-made environment that arouses the illusion of inﬁnity. The digitally rendered images of natural landscapes along with the real human performance footage and the soundscapes of forest, city noises, and audio recordings from historical catastrophes are extended into the entire space through the screens, demonstrating that we should reconﬁgure the dualistic epistemology and retrieve a non-linear, interrelated mindset for a sustainable future.
Bang & Lee’s artwork ‘The Place that has no name’ revolves around ‘terra incognita’ (Latin for unknown land)’, a creative concept that has been developed by the artist duo for a long time. It recalls a remote wilderness, which explores a route across the prairie like in a video game world waiting for the ﬁrst level to load. Using multi-channel 3D animation, drawings, paintings, sculptures, other various objects, and text in the form of free verses serves as the artist duo’s response to the surreal situations they have experienced personally. For the artist, the “terra” explored in their work is appropriately given a new space for interpretation in times of pandemic crisis. (Excerpt from the artist note and 2021 Asian Art Biennial catalogue)
Finally, Jinjoon Lee’s Wandering Sun continues the artist’s exploration of liminal spaces and further questions how we can explore the relationship between the natural and the artiﬁcial through AI-generated sceneries. The algorithm forms a perfect loop across meticulously con-trolled interval widths which do not cause any sudden movement or velocity change within the video, yielding the audience a view of ‘naturally’ transforming artiﬁcial landscapes such as the sea, sky, and sun. Whilst nature’s sublimity and objectiﬁcation expand through hyper-realistic snapshots and algorithmic generation, it infers how nature and technology are seamlessly conjoined to challenge the binaries of the natural and the artiﬁcial.