Magic Beans is pleased to present Seungmo Park's first solo exhibition in Berlin. Titled Beware of the Seductive Traps of Spiritual and Psychic Power, the exhibition will be composed of works from several of Park's diverse series as well as a new sculpture. Together, the works present the artist's engagement with the evanescent properties of seeing and sensing, presenting artworks whose very appearance evinces the transitory nature of perception.
The central work of the exhibition is an installation involving a large new wire and pulp sculpture. This work is in the rough shape of walking person, and will be placed in the first room of the gallery, offering the interactivity typical of some of Park's Maya series, which are also being shown. While the form is recognizable, its globular yet delicate look creates a certain distance to the object. Nevertheless, it generates within the viewer an affinity usually reserved for more “realistic” sculptures or artwork, and it is in balancing the familiar and detached that Park's art gains a passing aura – a quality also indicative of his Maya works.
The Maya sculptures are photo-naturalistic images of people and landscapes that are made by hand-fabricating metal fibers into compositions based on photographs. The installative sculptures are then hung or placed on a pedestal so that the viewer can “see through” the images. “Maya” means “illusion” in Sanskrit, and indeed the works do play with perception: by transposing an image from a photograph into the three-dimensional realm of wire sculpture, Park offers viewers the opportunity to see the ephemeral through the real, as in Maya 813 (2018).
Park will further show works from his Human series, which are made from shaped aluminum and clearly resemble the natural poses of people. In particular, two works from this series – both titled Ego (both 2017) – will be placed in the second gallery space, creating an atmospheric of bodies. Spreading across the space are images and sculptures of the shape of people, sometimes loosely conceived, sometimes more concrete. The universality found in the exhibition translates into a broad viewing experience, where the objects and images have lost their pure functionality and been pared down to an essence, a human essence – however fleeting that may be.
Seungmo Park was born in 1969 in Sanchung, Korea. He lives and works in Seoul and New York City. Park's works have been shown in notable venues, galleries, and museums.