The exhibition Wednesday is Indigo Blue is held under the theme of synesthesia, ‘Synesthesia’ is a phenomenon that gives rise to an intersection of different senses. For example, when you hear a sound, you see a certain color in your mind or when you see a word, a certain color comes to your mind. Synesthetic experience is so individual that it has been regarded as an area located somewhere between science and nonscience, and reality and imagination until recently. The experience of the materialistic body and its sensory memory are the texture of an individual's reality and the crucial axis of his/her identity. Synesthesia's primordial and irrational logic is contrary to the scantiness and stiffness of rational notion, and gives shape to various differences in experience that are deported by rational thinking, the possibility of the primordial and unrestrained sensation, and the individual subjectivity woven through them. In addition, novel integration of interpermeating senses and the rich flavor overflowing by its chemical reaction show us the new possibility of creativity and sensibility that open up a new dimension.
Today, when research on the nature of humans centering on their sensation is actively conducted in various areas, the exhibition illuminates works by artists who carried out multied experiments on the force of humans' primordial and subjective sensation crucial to an individual identity and the possibility of its artistic expansion. We hope that the exhibition will be a chance for viewers to touch new sensory thoughts of this era through the synesthetic artworks by the participating artists.
Jaewook Lee created video work Treatise on Rhythm, Color, and Birdsong (2016) based on the art of French modern composer Oliver Messiaen(1908-1992), who is well known for synesthetic music, and the art of Spanish-born surrealist painter Remedios Varo (1908~1963), who turned science into poetry — the two artists have a common point in that they crossed freely the border between sense and sense, and sense and concept and built up their unique artistic world through a new linkage with non-artistic areas, such as science or mysticism. Against the background of the canyon of Utah in the US, Lee made the synesthetic music of Messiaen — who wrote music through the colors he saw in sounds — and paintings of Varo intersected and resonated. For this exhibition, a new video work Treatise on Birdsong (2021), which developed Treatise on Rhythm, Color, and Birdsong (2016) into the form of an experimental ary, and four synesthetic drawings Sound-Color Synesthesia of Birdsong (2021) will be presented. In addition, installations that let the canyon of the video unfold into the exhibition hall are set up.
Jaye Rhee’s 4-channel video work Tear (2002) shows a woman slowly walking through a huge fabric. Although it comprises a very simple emotionless act and a sound, it touches the viewer’s poignant feeling beyond a simple sensory stimulus. For the work Going Places (2005), Rhee used an old 16mm-film camera with a spring. Whenever one of the film moved forward, she filmed her jumping up in the air that is full of balloons. And she connected the floating balloons in the air and thousands of gravity-defying jumps in her unique sensuous logic. The physical act that looks uninterested and dry in each of Rhee’s works makes the viewer perceive a lump of premodial and uncertain senses that are hard to be verbalized and organized.
Dongwook Jang’s series of , SUN PM230 (2018) and A sleeping bird (2018), A plastic bag containing choco (2017), (2017) started from the process of recording the memories and times of s he had come across. The landscape paintings expanded from the series of , A spot that forgot smell (2020), Intersection (2020) and A vacant lot (2019) show forgotten spaces in a city, such as a redevelopment area, unfrequented playground on the edge of a residence zone, and empty lot only with construction materials. Jang, who spent his childhood in a tourist attraction, has a memory of uneasiness and anxiety that he felt whenever all tourists went back home at the end of every tourist season. And the memory is now overlapped with forgotten s and places he comes across anew, which evokes a sentimentality intertwined with reality and illusion in his memory.
Interval. Recess. Pause. (2017) is a Sojung Jun's video piece about three korean adoptees the artist met in France. These adoptees recall Korea with memories composed of very vague sensory experiences. Their memories exist clearly not of visual images, but of the senses in color, sound, taste, smell. dim light in a dream and more, which are traced from the belly. The video alternates between testimonials of the adoptees of their memories and choreographer Olivia Lioret’s interpretative moves of the excerpts from Theresa Hak Kyung Cha’s book Dictée (1982) (“It had been snowing, During the while. Interval. Recess. Pause. … "). In addition, the geometric structure and rhythm of Dictée “sensed” by the artist plays out in variation through the video, implying subtle nuances that cannot be expressed in words.
A work of bouba kiki: dialogue on synesthesia (2018) starts off from a question on sense transference and possibilities of translation, which unfolds Jun’s research and thought on synesthesia. The bouba/kiki effect is well-known psychological experiment for a non-arbitrary mapping between speech sounds and the visual shape of s. The book includes the letters and conversations she exchanged with one curator and Fanny Schulmann who curated a painting exhibition of composer Arnold Schönberg greatly influenced the art world of Kandinsky.
Jaewook Lee is a visual artist who deals with images, and a researcher and manager who seizes interdisciplinary research of other areas. He uses the theory of science and philosophy as well as art and music for his work. Recently, he is committing himself to the symbiotic relationship between nature and humans, and notion of things. Lee is also the founder and director of Mindful Joint, an annual symposium that focuses on non-hierarchical knowledge sharing in contemporary art. He has participated in exhibitions, talks, performances, and screenings at such venues as Museo de Antofagasta (Chile,2020), Hong-Gah Museum (Taiwan,2018), Art Sonje Center (Seoul,2017), the Asia Culture Center (Gwangju,2016) among others.
Jaye Rhee revels in the space between the ironic and the poignant, reality and illusion, memory and fantasy, and language and imagination with work that simultaneously incorporates video, photography, and performance. Her works that look very natural are mainly made by repeated acts or handcrafted efforts in an analogue setting. Rhee poses a question over the imperfect perception system of humans by revealing the gap between what we know and what we see. Her work has since been exhibited at various international venues, including Fulton Center (New York,2021), Norton Museum of Art(Florida,2021), Seoul Museum of Art (Seoul,2019), High Museum of Art (Atlanta,2018), CAAA (Portugal,2014).
Dongwook Jang depicts memories of things that are disappearing around us, and s and landscapes that are intersecting with them. He spent his childhood in a tourist destination where he had to see remnants of a tourist season whenever it was over. The spaces forgotten or s discarded in a city are intertwined with Jang’s personal memory of the tourist attraction by the sea. Jang seizes a spot that remind him of his past and contains a vague sense that does not allow illusion and reality to be separated on the canvas. He has participated in exhibitions at such venues as Lee Ungno Museum M2 (Daejeon,2020), Artist Residency TEMI (Daejeon,2019), Artcenter Whiteblock (Gyeonggi-do,2018), Gallery Mark (Seoul,2017), Label Gallery (Seoul,2016) among others.
Using the language of video and writing, the artist is interested in creating a nonlinear space-time to awake a new awareness on history and the present or in how the changes made in physical boundaries penetrate daily sensorial experiences. In particular, she has produced works that weave and crisscross with her personal experiences by paying attention to people standing on the boundary amid the ruins of modernity and invisible voices. She has newly established what she has fragmented through interviews, historical materials and narratives appropriated from classical texts, and carries out experiments intersecting personal, psychological and aesthetic factors with political ones in life. She has held solo and group exhibitions at a number of institutions including National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (Seoul,2021), Kunstmuseum Bern (Bern,2021), Nam June Paik Art Center (Gyeonggi-do,2021), Tai Kwun JC Contemporary (Taiwan,2020), Ottawa Art Gallery (Ottawa,2020), ARKO Art Center (Seoul,2018), Palais de Tokyo (Paris,2017).