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Photoⓒ2009 Gaainart.com


Screening so many portfolios, Lee Bei-Kyoung's portfolio didn't seem so colorful enough to attract the first gaze. But with reviewing his interests on time and space as well as the formal structure of the work and moderate harmony between theme and the media, I sensed his strong self-structure as well as an artistic talent. He studied sculpture in Korea and film, video and media art in Germany. After around 10 year's stay in Germany, he had solo exhibitions in Gallery Jeongmiso and Noam gallery and took part in many group exhibitions in Korea. He was also selected as a residence artist of National Art Studio Changdong in Seoul. I think it is appropriate to grasp his artistic activity in Korea from 2003 which year he showed 2 video installations.

 

The keywords which penetrate his works are time, space and the ontology of being acquired by the interactivity. A series of his works mainly sensed the being of viewer, manipulated the being as a computerized data, and created a distorted time and space. 'Videochapel'(2005) was composed with strong visual effects and sounds created by the intervention of the viewer. 'Selftime'(2003) transformed the physical specialty of viewer into a data for the axis of time coordinates and showed a visual image based on the data. 'Island'(2004) captured the scene of the outer view and transformed into layered images which processes were based on the data from the physical feature of viewer. In 'Before the big bang'(2006), there's a semi-transparent 3-D map, which shape is changed by the real-time images and sounds of outside of the exhibition room. 'That time'(2006) linked the outer view with the shape of a candle light and showed a double play between virtual image and physical world.

 

Lee Bei-Kyoung_Relationships_video&sound_2007

Lee Bei-Kyoung_Relationships_video&sound_2007

This time he uses rather simple interface compared to the previous works. An image of certain space with a street and window is projected on the wall of Brain factory. After the approaching of viewer, the shape of him becomes a part of the scenery. It is not in the center of the whole view but simply a dim part of daily things on the scene. It is a sound which responds the viewer on real time. It analyzes the movement and physical shape of the viewer and creates each rhythm of pulsation based on the data.

 
I would like to point out an 'absence of narrative' as a unique aspect of his work. This is the most outstanding point of his work which makes his originality among many other media artists today. The reason of the absence of narrative is the concept of the time and space which he established and named 'Space-time continuum'. He recognizes the time and space as a mutually incorporated entity, which the time loses linear sequence and the space loses physical beingness. The premise condition of narrative is not affective without the order of time.   

Lee Bei-Kyoung_Repeated Freedom #2_Interactive video&Audio installation_230×150×150cm_2009


It is necessary to know that the concept of the unity of time and space is the core of his mental or emotional realm as an artist and to check the structure he equipped for reaching the core. In his work, there's no physical ground of existence and non-existence. It there is, then there is, if there is not, there is not. There's no basis of existence and non-existence. The time exists owing to the existence of me, the space is made of my ontological materiality.

 

But we should be aware not to skip the emotional aspect of work being caught into the trap of too many concepts. All these conceptual expressions are generated from the personal experiences of the artist, and those experiences are the core of his artistic imagination. For example, looking at the extension of the ontological meaning of 'I' into the unity of time and space, I remembered 'ilnyeomsamcheon', a teaching of buddhism meaning there's a whole universe even in all the creatures being in desire or agony.

 

Lee Bei-Kyoung_Insel_Interactive video installation_2009

Trough this exhibition Lee, Bei-Kyoung seems to epitomize and readjust his works for a few years and starts the sincere thinking for the positions he will take in the future. What he shows later will be somewhat different from the formal aspects of the previous works. But I hope the solid connection between conceptual realm and formal elements as well as the deep understanding of the media which makes the meaning of physical existence pointless to be still valid hereafter. 

 

By | Koh, Won-Seok

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Posted by EYEBALL_Media Arts Webzine


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