Questioning the Conditions of Civilization Under the Pressure of…
Contemporary art has not been a popular topic in the mainstream Korean media for a long time, except for its annual – or biennial – appearance around the time of openings of Venice or Gwangju Biennale. However, with the rise of Korean culture through Hallyu (which translates into Korean Wave), Korean contemporary art has become a topic of interest for the media as well as for the government bodies supporting arts and culture: contemporary art has become a member of a platoon that fights its way toward the (imagined) cultural hierarchy on the global stage, regardless of its will to become a part of the game or not.
In other words, for some of those in the chain of command of the cultural warfare of recognition, time is ripe for Korean contemporary art to achieve something that K-Pop achieved in recent years around the globe. Again, this national anticipation may have nothing to do with what happens in Venice. But again, eyes (in Korea) will follow the Korean Pavilion, yearning for yet another Hallyu in the field that has not been under much national attention.
With a poetic title that includes a proper noun in Korean and an aim to “question the conditions of civilization,” how does To Breathe: Bottari satisfy or circumvent the omnipresent national call for standing at the front line in promoting the national status through cultural affairs?Work on Work (Hyejin Jang & Jaeyong Park)