Living in Australia for two years, I was fascinated by nature around me. Beaches with full sun, sea waves, bubbles on sand, exotic sea creatures, tropical birds and flowers with vivid colors fully amazed me. It did not take too long to start a new series of works to celebrate them. The pieces were made with borosilicate colored tubings. Each element was made separately and hot glued together with torch flame.
Fragile Creatures (2009-)
Inspired by genetic engineering and alchemy, I have been creating organic/mechanic hybrids assembled by broken pieces of glass apparatus from a laboratory. Labels and decals on the original apparatus stayed on the creatures, so that they could literally look like lap-made creatures.
I see the genetic engineering technology as high-speed, man-made evolution of our era. Reading articles about the controversial technology, I had a mixture of feelings - awe and curiosity. This is not a new thing in history. People has been experienced fear and excitement toward new technologies in their era. I believe that the excitement about GE technology is related to our passion and desire toward the 'advanced being' that has been with us for a long time in the form of myth and folktale.
My creatures are visual responses to it. Clear glass was chosen to express unsafe, fragile, mythical or rather unrealistic feelings.
The series of ‘Sphere’ is about nature and its mythical energy in Animatism. It is a belief that all animate and inanimate objects in nature are sharing a common life force. It is an idea widely spread in many belief systems especially in East Asia. In Korea, a flow of the energy that sustains living beings is called ‘Gi(氣)’ and the concept has been vigorously developed to define relations between human and nature. Fascinated by the idea of the unified and universal energy source, I tried to visualize a core of the energy.
Entering Wonderland (1999 - 2003)
Since I came to US in 1999, I have been working with glass to talk about my story of being alien. My feelings of ambiguity, anxiety and dyslexia became subjects of my work. Material glass served well with my narrative and introspective purpose. The transparency and reflection of glass is both a powerful and playful tool. I have been working with visibility of glass as a metaphor of accessibility. Throughout the history, mirror reflection has been used as a powerful tool to express someone’s inner feelings. I often use mirrors to express emotions such as feelings of ambiguity.