Hey-Ja, City Reverie, 130X93cm, Oil on canvas, 2008
Exhibition Title : Thousand Characters for the 'Matrix: Return of City'
Period : 20. 08 ~ 03. 09 2008
Place : UNC gallery
'Whatever you imagine, we will see even more.'
Into the matrix of the city
Heyja's work begins in her atelier, which is located in the outskirts of Seoul. The main motive power for her works is the (disorder due to) confusion of primitive rural life and urbanization proceeding like incoming water at the border between countryside and city. After modernization city space became a massive space-structure intertwined with hardly describable complex mechanisms. Marvelous high-rising structures of the city once again are demolished overnight. The city proliferates through the process of the structures' new compositions and rearrangements. The message coming in from this grand city system is not simply limited to the feeling of living in a complete different century or the big differences in daily life. The liquid surface of the city within this space full of self-proliferation and variety throws one into confusion weather it is actual reality or just imagination, and gives you the feeling of hopelessness and dizziness. At this point Heyja spacewalks the city matrix. The city matrix that is framed in order to make exist a neither real nor virtual, but a new layer of existence ...
Creation and extinction, the returning city
Man has been making cities. By planning the overall outlook of the city and constructing buildings and roads the physical outer appearance comes into existence. Through practice of man's society's relations of production and domination of power the city has been equipped with an invisible inner structure. Does that imply that the city was composed according to the plans of the people who designed it? In Heyja's works the city is not made and composed by man, the city exists by its own living power. When forms matched to modern plans of man remain, the city cannot receive any power to live and falls into ruins. Heyja draws cities that experience creation and extinction over and over again and have their own vital force. Here cities do not exist as fixed forms, but as endlessly moving and as sticky fluid and varying media that can change in every moment. Her cities are spaces where things are condensed giving notice to creation and that are full of conflict and confusion internalized by the creatures. Finally, the city 'made' by man returns as the city's 'existing' matrix.
A paranoid journey of border drawing
Heyja is an artist persistently sticking to borders of all things. She stands at the border between city and countryside, past and present(or future), reality and imagination, and art and nature. Heyja does not deny the double-sidedness of borders. Even though there are phobic shocks and confusion at all these borders Heyja dauntlessly accepts these and presents them. Within the vague domain of the city's matrix that is interspersed with violence being carried out in city space and the feeling of helplessness and dizziness due to it Heyja sets out on a paranoid journey on which she will finally find the unexpressable balance.
My atelier is located in the outskirts of Seoul in a greenbelt redevelopment area surrounded by soil and cement with an environment more and more urbanizing.
The roadside is full of dazzling real-estate signboards ... places that were removed by cranes are blocked up by cutoff-walls ... the lively appearance of the outskirts where life used to look like nature itself and where there was a special way of disorder and vagueness is busy making itself ready for the incoming orderly and static constructions.
The city is dreaming of a uniform and stable space, but at the same time it is a mixed scenery where networks of uncertain and complex desires crash into and intertwine with each other.
The buildings, closely packed with signboards, reminds one of creatures in the jungle who come out of their solid and stable structure moving themselves and changing their appearance. As 'gesture' or 'motion' are the etymology of the word 'sign' reality and imagination are jumbled together and the buildings constantly move towards something following the movement of desires.
To me my works are questions about the identities that always alterate due to change, and are journeys for redeeming the energy of creation without loosing balance towards the chaotic scenery.
- Excerpt of 2008 Heyja's artist's note.
Artist : Hey-Ja (1970-)
1999 B.F.A., Chung-Ang University, Seoul, Korea
2005 M.F.A., Hong-Ik University, Seoul, Korea
"Uncertain Scape", Songeun Gallery , Seoul, Korea
"Window", Gallery Genesun, Seoul, Korea
"Flowing Behind", Space Stone and Water, Anyang , Korea
Kepco Plaza Gallery (selection in exhibition support artist), Seoul, Korea
Dukwon Gallery, Seoul, Korea
Group Exhibition & Awards"
Hong Kong International Art Fair, Galerie Kashya Hildebrand, Hong Kong
Singapore Art Fair, Galerie Kashya Hildebrand , Singapore
"Dreamscape" Galerie Kashya Hildebrand Zurich, Switszerland
The 7th Songeun Grand Art Exhibition, Insa Art Center, Seoul, Korea
"Indication", Artfactory Gallery, Paju Heiry, Korea
"From Heyri Winter Art Collection", Bookhouse Gallery, Paju, Korea
Pre-International Incheon Women Biennale "Breathing", Incheon Culture& Arts Center, Korea
Young Artist Activity Selection, Gyeonggi Province Culture Foundation
Chang Moon Nature Art Festival, Chang Moon Art Center, Hwasung, Korea
Naepo Contemporary Art Festival, Hongju Culture& Arts Center, Hongsung, Korea
"Time 2004", Gallery PICI, Seoul, Korea
Naepo Contemporary Art Exhibition, Hongsung, Korea
"Vision and Prospect of Contemporary Korean Painting", Cheltenham Art Center, U.S.A
"Oasis", Public Space Project, Namsan Library, Seoul, Korea
Dong-A Grand Art Exhibition, National Museum of Contemporary Art, Kwachon , Korea
Joong-Ang Grand Art Exhibition, Seoul Museum of Art
"Self-Demonstration", Gallery Chang, Seoul, Korea
"National Youth Biennale of Korea", Taegu Culture& Arts Center, Korea
"Botanical speculation", Gallery Lamer, Seoul, Korea
Hey-Ja - Thousand Characters for the ‘Matrix: Return of City’ Press Release as pdf-File 226 KB
Hey-Ja - Thousand Characters for the ‘Matrix: Return of City’ Press Release as pdf-File 71,6 KB in Chinese language