Mackerel safranski, 78.8 X 109.1cm, 2008
The Dictionary defines 'strange' as 'odd' or 'weird.'
Then, why is an object or a phenomenon felt strange?
Probably, because it may be different from the existing one. In today's society, what is 'strange' tends to be regarded 'bad' rather than be perceived simply as 'different.' To conclude something as 'wrong' only because it is not familiar or not same as the existing one is a banal attitude refusing the 'creativity' or the value of essence of art. 'Being strange' must be the primary engine of power for creation.
Then, what is the origin of 'being strange' featured by Lee I-rip and Go Deung-eo both participating in this 'Strange' exhibition?
The two artists feature 'being strange' or the immortal value in creation of art, as 'medium of thought and perception.'
Experiences remain as memories, which will change their forms in consciousness and unconsciousness. In addition, the memories will reorganize themselves repeatedly over time, losing their original meanings and forms. The crowd of memories which looks meaningless and disorderly like the bobbin entangled intricately evokes an obscure and vague emotion. It may be revealed lucidly through an accidental situation or object. However, the lucidity approaches us as a kind of insight that can hardly be explained with any probability or logic.
The artist Lee I-rip pays attention to the obscure and vague emotion evoked by the fragments of memory transcending time and space and reinterprets it into an insight unexplainable logically. The memories and traces kept in mind but familiar only in unconsciousness are not simply reassembled but converted into an artistic sensibility projected on the art works. So, the objects expressed on the art works seem to be strange, although familiar for no reason. And they seem to linger for no clear reason.
The artist Go Deung-eo suggests some new criteria of perception for today's social structure deemed quite natural.
Since some time ago, people have been passive enough to accept the values of the world unconsciously without discussing whether they are correct or wrong. Individuals' desire and emotion have lost their values for the maintenance of the society established. Every one struggles desperately every day to be qualified for the member required by the society. He or she wanders with his or her identity lost, while living a life different from his or her desired life. Artist Go Deung-eo delivers an intense message to the society by featuring such human image with the loud colors and weird forms.
The men ruling the forest, and the younger girls losing their own looks and wandering in the society established primarily for menů
Artist Go Deung-eo looks at the existing social structure not from men's perspective but from the ruled people's or women's perspective to claim that we should change our perception by being awakened of 'being strange.'
While Go Deung-eo puts forwards some straight social cry against the silent pressure imposed by the society, Lee I-rip suggests a low-tone poem about another world created by the human memories both conscious and unconscious. Their messages with their own unique brush touches seem to evoke a sense of 'being strange' for some unknown reason.