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A Question about Existence: "Where Are You Going?"

"Lord, where are you going?"
"I go to Rome to be crucified!"

This exhibition is the same as Lim Seung-chun’s spring show, in which he conceived a new world, an enormous ship, and a model house. The ship on a voyage unveiled an aesthetic standard, also presenting a point of departure, chronicled in a voyage log. This exhibition presents sketches of conflict and disturbance between those claiming to proceed and those claiming to sail back. Sculptor Lim Seung-chun presents spaces, reminiscent of drama and film scenes, through an overlap of narrative landscapes, beyond sculptural form. He employsa strategy to present sections for scenarios and photographs.

This exhibition is like the conclusion to his ship series. The ship built was a huge boat. The houses,on the deck, give the impression of determined voyage. The boat was transformed into one with three prows during its voyage, so it could go anywhere, and in a contradictory way, it was unable also to move anywhere. Those who conceived an ideal world, autonomously governed, pursuing ecological community, could not unify theirideals, and eventually defined three paths they had to take: what they faced during their long voyage was extreme psychological stress caused by vague fantasies and tremendous horrors.

Supplementing the unique boats, Lim Seung-chun createda whale carrying a baby whale on her back. Harpoons stuck in the whale’s body are a strong symbol forming a narrative in the exhibition. He generates a dramatic effect, illuminating a boat and ship, with a few lights. The two are distanced sufficiently, and the wounded whale’s dismal cry hovers around the venue. Upon entering the venue, viewers may also see a weird ship. Houses on the boat, recalling a poverty-stricken hillside village in Bongcheon-dong, Seoul, and a voyage-story about a new world remind viewers of Noah’s Arc. They may also experience a gloomy, ash-colored landscape, without any color of hope. Walking along the passageway to the venue, something dark appears far away. It is a whale that makes people on the ship feel fearful. With the advent of this monster, those dreaming of a return to home find something different. This scene can be a scenario, figurative photographic work, or a radio program.

Those trying to sail back say, "Do you believe those claiming to advance could ensure your safety and life?" This is a question about how much time and endurance are required to attain hope. Waiting is endless, like Waiting for Godotby Samuel Beckett. All questionsare about existence. Asking about my existence is identical with looking for hope. The epilogue of this story shows a clear sky after rain, a rainbow over the sea, and kids running down to a hill. Weare the Ouroboros of time. Life or reality is how to cut off this chain of transmigration.

Lim’s boat is now drifting in open waters near Myanmar due to engine failure. Likewise, all lives are anchored in mysterious territories. Just like South Korea, isolated for over half a century, and Lee Myung-jun, a protagonist, who selects the third area as his new fatherland, not the South or the North, in the novel Plazaby Choi In-hoon. Lim poses a question concerning your existence in 21stcentury South Korea.

By Kim Jong-gil / Art Critic

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