Barakat Contemporary presents Night Crazing, a solo exhibition by New York and Honolulu-based artist Sung Hwan Kim.
Based on a critical stance toward issues of modern and contemporary history, social structures, cultural practices, and education systems, Sung Hwan Kim weaves together personal histories with fantasies, rumors, politics, and culture; blending media such as installation, video, performance, music, light, and drawings in work in which the exhibition itself becomes art in its own right as it responds to the architecture of its specific setting. To present the different elements that have recurred in his work over the past two decades, the Night Crazing exhibition will be taking place in mixed media installation form at two locations: Barakat Contemporary 1 (36 Samcheong-ro 7-gil in Seoul’s Jongno District) and Barakat Contemporary 2 (58-4 Samcheong-ro, also in Jongno). Each exhibition space consists of a key video work by Kim, along with drawings and installations that interact with it. At Barakat Contemporary 1 is Washing Brain and Corn (2010), first commissioned by Media City Seoul in 2010 as a video work, at that time shown in a simple installation form. This work has since developed into a multi-layered installation that includes a radio play howl bowel owl (2013, distributed and broadcast by Bayerischer Rundfunk/Intermedium Records) and text Ki-da Rilke (2011, published by Sternberg Press and Kunsthalle Basel). This work was last shown in its full installation version for the Tanks at Tate Modern in 2012, when Kim was the first commissioned exhibition artist in that new space. Connected to the topic of inter-Korean relations, it alludes to different layered narratives, alongside collages and drawings with complex frames bridging Kim’s past work to his recent practice and the gallery space, incorporating elements of the surrounding architecture, nature in the vicinity, the trajectory of passers-by and visitors, as well as the lighting, walls, and carpet. At Barakat Contemporary 2 is the video Love Before Bond (2017), which was installed at the main exhibition of the 2017 Venice Biennale. This work poses questions about the concepts of ethics and aesthetics as they relate to ethnicity, culture, and migration.
Through layering that reflects the passage of time and the psychological and physical marks that are acquired with it, the exhibition’s content and structure shows not only the artist’s ongoing interest in how his work renders relationships with history visible, but also the temporal and spatial layers that imbue our perceptions of story and our position in the surrounding world. Sung Hwan Kim’s solo exhibition provides an opportunity to experience the full range of work by an artist active on the international stage, including a 2021 Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) solo exhibition and other major international art institutions. It was intended as part of an ambitious plan to show the fruits of Barakat Contemporary’s efforts over its past years as a gallery. We invite you to immerse yourself in the elaborate composition of Sung Hwan Kim, in which works are connected through meticulously crafted installations and devices, a world where the layers of time overlap with the present moment for the viewers observing his work. Kim’s frequent collaborator, David Michael DiGregorio, who composed and produced the music for videos in both exhibitions at Barakat Contemporary, as well as for Kim’s recent, large-scale installation in the Busan Biennale 2022, will present a concert, Read Aloud Lyrics, on the opening day at 5PM.
all images © the gallery and the artist(s)