The Gyeongnam International Art Fair took place earlier this month from Thursday, July 4th to Sunday, July 7th. The event was held at CECO and featured over 80 different booths housing hundreds of works of art from around the world.
Although there were paintings, etchings, drawings, sculptures, and mixed media from a variety of cities, provinces and countries, I continued to be most captivated by the talented modern galleries and artists from Gyeongnam.
Some standouts included (keep in mind this is entirely subjective and from the point of view of a foreigner experiencing Korean modern art) the 갤러리전 Gallery from Daegu
This sculpture was entitled “Happy Crying” and showed a sweet, warm softness in an old man’s happy tears, not often seen amongst Korean men of the older generation.
On the contrary, this sculpture was entitled “It’s Okay, It’s Okay,” which I internalized to be a sad and somewhat reflective portrayal of how people in Korean society are discouraged from displaying their emotion publicly, no matter the intensity of their grief or sadness.
Another booth that caught my eye was Tongyeong’s 전혁림 미술 Art Gallery, which featured comic book style renderings of Tongyeong’s hometown hero and Korean national legend, Admiral Yi Soon Shin. The paintings modernized the traditional war hero by adding a comic book aesthetic, speaking to a younger generation of Koreans, and instilling a re-imagined vision and sense of pride for Korea’s naval hero.
Geoje’s funky Yim Choon Lee’s Exhibition featured a life sized alien-like mannequin and a form of art referred to as “twist art.” (http://www.yimchoonlee.com)
Lastly I was drawn to Lee Kyung Lim’s mixed media renderings of Busan’s Gamcheon Culture Village. The creative resourcefulness and close attention to detail entirely captured the vibrant and jubilant colors that continue to make Gamcheon a unique and beautiful destination.
♦ Posted by Coby Zeifman, Changwon Repoter Blogger.