Shipping containers, feathers, bone fragments and more are just some of the materials used in The Promise of If by Lim Min-ouk. These unusual materials are used not only for creating organic art, but as a means of keeping the almost-forgotten, present.
The Plateau Samsung Museum of Art in downtown Seoul has used its amazing architectural space in an unique way in order to drive the viewers into an immersive artistic experience. Upon entering the museum, two disassembled shipping containers stacked on top of each other play music that evoke forgotten memories.
“The Gates of Citizen” standing tall in the grand lobby is in stark contrast to the sun soaked room and usual feeling of the museum’s entrance. Moving further, a combination of art structures, video installations, and giant wax work entices viewers to think about the divide between North and South Korea.
The viewer is first faced with “Contours of Unity”, as well as the remembrance of separated families appearing on Korean television in order to find their missing family members. Both of these, even with a language barrier, are so moving that it is hard not to get emotional.
The most unusual and unique of all is “Running on Empty”, the recreation of a studio set using organic matter to represent the cameraman, sound guy, lighting personnel etc. Lim here questions the role of the artist in today’s media-obsessed society, as well as questioning media’s role in art. It would be difficult to leave the museum without thinking about one’s role in days gone by and how we fit into today’s society.
The Promise of If by Lim Min-ouk will come to an end on Feb. 14, 2016. Plateau is open Tuesdays through Sundays, 10 am to 6 pm. Tickets are priced at W3,000.