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2015, Vol., No.37

  • 1.

    “Nomadic Readymade” in Chinese Contemporary Art: Ai Weiwei and Ni Haifung

    Dong-Yeon Koh | 2015, (37) | pp.7~33 | number of Cited : 3
    Abstract PDF
    Since the 2000s Ai Weiwei(艾未未) and Ni Haifung(倪海峰) has used readymade in their collaborative works to convey the dire circumstances in which Chinese workers can be compared with western consumers, especially under the western-centered market capitalism on a global scale. Hereby, I coined the term “nomadic readymade” to examine the recent development of readymade works transnationally manufactured and exhibited in contemporary Chinese art. Ai Weiwei’s Sunflower (葵花籽, 2010) sheds a light upon the dire circumstances of the chinese workers under communist government while it also indicates the 17th and 18th century colonial history related tofair trade of the Dutch East India Company and Chinese porcelain workshops. In a similar vein, Ni Haifung collected 15 tons of left-over and garbage fabric from one of the factories in Habei(河北) area and exhibited at Manifesta in 2008 to make western audience/potentially consumer to stitch fabric and to question the division between Chinese workers and western consumers in Para-production (2007-2008).
  • 2.

    An Essay on Trends and Prospects of the 21st Century Western Aesthetics 2 - Reconsideration of the Avant-Garde Theory: Buchloh and Foster’s Criticism on Bürger and Bürger’s Response

    김종기 | 2015, (37) | pp.35~67 | number of Cited : 1
    Abstract PDF
    The aim of this essay is to deal with the putative twilight of the avant-garde movement and its prospects for the contemporary 21st century. This essay first analyzes the core of Burger’s avant-garde theory and appraises Buchloh and Foster’s criticism thereof. Then, the issues of the avant-garde and the post-avant-garde will be scrutinized from a pro-Burger perspective with a focus on Burger’s rebuttals. Burger regards the historic avant-garde as a failed project, and believes that the neo-avant-garde is a mere replica of the previously failed historic avant-garde. According to him, the neo-avant-garde has lacked the capacity to resist and to criticize ever since its beginning. However, Buchlohand Foster criticize Burger because they recognise the neo-avant-garde as taking a progressive stance. Regarding this, Burger criticizes Buchloh by stating that he is too pre-occupied with the analysis of superficial content, and therefore does not grasp the significance of the original avant-garde project in terms of a generalized theory. In addition, Burger does not deny Foster’s view that the avant-garde intention is truly being practiced by the second neo-avant-garde artists. However, he points out that there is always the risk of over- and under-appreciation when we appraise the works of individual artists. Therefore he insists that establishing the general theory is of foremost importance if we can acknowledge that an artist’s artwork has co-existing positive and negative features at the same time. Based on this, he argues that the avant-garde can exist only if the general population forms the belief that social change is needed to resolve conflicts within a society.
  • 3.

    The Relation between Surface-Assemblage of Screen and Spectatorship: Doug Aitken and Tacita Dean

    gu an | 2015, (37) | pp.69~94 | number of Cited : 1
    Abstract PDF
    This paper examines operation of work and relation with spectator which demonstrate in Electric Earth (1999) of Doug Aitken and Film (2011) of Tacita Dean. Doug Aitken seeks to develop the self as constituting a whole with the other. Besides, the artist is asking the question to the meaning. In other words, his work is coming down to a surface. It is the one that operates as a surface. Tacita Dean expresses the world of analog. She regards analog with the shelter of life. It is analog and the shelter of life that designate the sphere of surface. In my reading of the two works, I have attempted to explore the elements of surface as movement, time, “figure(in Gilles Deleuze’s theory)” and event. Figure is a fundamental factor which operates surface as generating time. Figure enters into relation of nonrelation as going around surface and encountering other figure and meaning. The relation of nonrelation unfolds connection, conjunction and disjunction. Also, Operation of connection, conjunction and disjunction are concluded in figure again. The works of Doug Aitken and Tacita Dean eventually are Figure. Each works as figure encounters spectator again. In the last chapter, my paper argues the way figure and spectator enter into relation of nonrelation. Figure attracts spectator. Spectator encounters figure. Spectator stops consciousness and operators its body. Spectator desires outside beyond the self. It is here that thought begins. The birth of spectatorship is appearance of thoughtful spectator.
  • 4.

    Visualization of Music: Synaesthesia and Schonbergian Genealogy in Visual Art

    Gyung Eun Oh | 2015, (37) | pp.95~119 | number of Cited : 7
    Abstract PDF
    The paper illustrates the influence of musical analogy on abstract art and the significance of synaesthesia in modern to contemporary art by charting the history of visual music. One of the forerunners to visualize the aesthetic purity of music was Wassily Kandinsky, who shared a common interest and understanding of synaesthesia with the composer Arnold Schonberg in the early 20th century. In the process of achieving a pictorial form of music, Kandinsky produced the first abstract painting in the history. Schonberg introduced a visual aid for his music to couple the two different genres of art. Their groundbreaking methods of creativity led to the birth of visual music. In the following generation, a number of Schonberg’s disciples intensified the experiment of visualizing auditory stimulation with the help of technology and the newly found medium of film on the soil of 1930’s Hollywood film industry. The Schonbergian geneaology of pursuing synaesthetic art with technological advances continues into the later part of the 20th century, which led to the discovery of video art. The history of visual music based on synaesthesia is significant in that it offers an alternative to the formalist trajectory of abstract art, which interprets it as a result of infinite reduction for medium specificity, and in turn it reveals the connection between early abstraction and new media art.
  • 5.

    Carolee Schneemann’s Performance of the 1960s and Reproduction of Sabbat

    LeeMoonJung | 2015, (37) | pp.121~152 | number of Cited : 0
    Abstract PDF
    Carolee Scheemann has used her body as her primary medium of philosophical and socio-political criticism since the 1960s when the discussion on feminism did not begin in earnest in art. Schneemann’s performance in the 1960s had a trait of the sabbat, which was the coven and the carnival of women, in the content and format. Firstly,Schneemann performed an erotic rite representing in a public sphere the sexuality and body that made women witches. Her performance violated social taboo and integrated sanctity and secularity. Secondly, Schneemann displayed an act of animism through her performance. She also presented herself as a offering to a goddess, a priestess, and a goddess. Thirdly, Schneemann has carried her performance like a divine ritual through the chaotic theater of cruelty and carnival for purification that coexists eros and thanatos, creation and extinction, and joy and despair. Schneemanns erformance is the restoration of the pre-symbolic and eruption of the semiotic. Her performance, which gives a free rein to repressed unconsciousness and stirs up imaginary defiance, brings out the regeneration and rehabilitation that breaks down a hardening of society and creates a fluidly moving world.
  • 6.

    Two Different Approaches of Artists in the Neo-Liberal Era: Damien Hirst and Felix Gonzalez-Torres

    Seunghyun Lee | 2015, (37) | pp.153~177 | number of Cited : 1
    Abstract PDF
    After postmodernism was firmly theorized early 1980’s, new neo-liberalist economic policies changed the landscape of world economy and society. This paper examines the effect of this socio-economic change on Damien Hirst and Felix Gonzalez-Torres and their artworks. Damien Hirst and Felix Gonzalez-Torres both exemplify how changes inthe artist’s attitude caused by neoliberalist economic policies influence the representation of society in their works. Neo-liberalism took capitalism one step further, allowing market economy to reach its extremes and society to be governed by extravagance. Whereas Warhol used the surface images of consumer society to represent his era, Hirst appropriated the foundational operating mechanisms of consumer society. For instance, in his work For the Love of God, Hirst ingeniously used expensive materials in the very process of making his art and thus established himself as one of the highest priced artists in the world. Whereas Hirst used the logic of market economy to be successful as an artist, Gonzalez-Torres used it to criticize consumer society through his artworks. A postmodern theorist Frederic Jameson once said that the invention and projection of global cognitive mapping is crucial. In a neo-liberalist world, however, the imminent mission is not just the cognitive mapping but rather the cognitive change for a better future.
  • 7.

    Exploring the Topological Implications of Minimalist Tautology: Mel Bochner’s “Less is Less”

    Jung Eun Young | 2015, (37) | pp.179~201 | number of Cited : 1
    Abstract PDF
    This paper explores the topological meanings of “Less is less”, a representative Minimalist tautology, in the context of modern history and philosophy. “Less is less”is the title of Mel Bochner’s critical essay on Dan Flavin’s Minimalist exhibition in 1966. On the one hand, in the context of the late twentieth century when orthodox formalist modernism was challenged and negated, the tautological statement “Less is less” rendered ironic criticism against both the instrumental rationality of formalist modernism embedded in “Less is more” and the playful regression of ludic postmodernism asserted by “Less is a bore.” On the other, in the context of the socalled ‘linguistic turn’ in modern philosophy and its impact on conceptual art, Bochners essay “Less is less” positioned itself in the critical turning point from Minimalist objects to a Postminimalist field wherein a variety of philosophical investigations were practiced under the influence of Wittgenstein’s philosophy of language. Illuminating the topological implications of the Minimalist tautology within the matrix of history and philosophy, I suggest Bochner’s “Less is less” was not a meaningless self-repetition but a strong assertion that we should ‘return to things themselves,’and further argue it was not the self-evident axiom of logic but a skeptical inquiry questioning the law ofidentity.
  • 8.

    Video Art and Actualization of Time: “The Illusion of Immediacy” and “the Real-Time Effect”

    CHO SEON RYEONG | 2015, (37) | pp.203~222 | number of Cited : 1
    Abstract PDF
    Since its outset, video art has been regarded as a media to realize ‘immediacy’. This essay reinterprets it and related concept of the real-time as an ‘effect’, referring to William Kaizen’s argument that the concept of immediacy is in fact ‘the illusion of mmediacy’. Video artists’ purpose of evoking the illusion of immediacy and the real-time effect is to reveal the reality of time through viewers’ feeling of presence in front of video images. One of the artistic values of video art in reference with time is its ability to actualizetime itself which is concealed in daily life. Bruce Nauman’s Art Make-Up, Vito Acconci’s Centers , Douglas Gordon and Philippe Parreno’s Zidane: A 21st Century Portrait, and Christian Marclay’s The Clock provoke boredom, pain, and fading of perception to their viewers. Through these experience, in these artworks, time can be actualized as pure duration or being (according to Heidegger), time of desire and drive (according to Lacan), and the exchange between virtual time and actual one (according to Delueze).
  • 9.

    The Trace of Presence-Absence: About the Contemporary Usage of the Shadow

    HAN EUI JUNG | 2015, (37) | pp.223~245 | number of Cited : 3
    Abstract PDF
    Shadow demonstrates the presence of an object, but it is also a proof of the absence because it doesn’t contain any part of the substances. Because of the duality, shadow is considered as the bearer of multiple significations. Platon offers the negative character, ‘illusion’, to the shadow. Shadow is only an image of an image, a deformation of adeformation of a reality and far off the essence of a thing. ‘Skiagraphy’ by Butades’s daughter, quoted in Natural History by Pliny, is to record the trace of her lover, namely, a substitute for the absence with the presence. We look for the platonic illusion through Christian Boltanski, and the inversion of the allegory of the cave through Bruno Perramant. A characteristic of the modern thought on shadow is the separation of the self, and an encounter with the other. The shadow by Jung is related to the dark side of the self. Gregory Crewdson extends it to the unconscious aspect of a society. In the deconstructionism of Derrida, the origin of the ‘I/self’ tracks back to ‘encounter with the Other before I am.’ The painting as the shadow is a place of the play of presenceabsence, and here I always encounter the other. In this respect, in Three Portraits (1984) by Francis Bacon, the other(’s photography) causes ‘I’(my shadow) and these shadows transcend the border between ergon and parergon.
  • 10.

    Descriptions of the Cultural Revolution in Early 1990s Chinese Film and Painting

    Ha Yoon Jung | 2015, (37) | pp.247~271 | number of Cited : 0
    Abstract PDF
    This study examines how the Cultural Revolution was depicted in early 1990s Mainland China by analyzing three films and two painting series, which are Chen Kaige’s Farewell My Concubine, Tian Zhuangzhuang’s The Blue Kite , Zhang Yimou’s To Live, Wang Guangyi’s Great Criticism Series, and Zhang Xiaogang’s The Bloodline: Big Family series. These works were born against the backdrop of the national rumination on Mao, called MaoCraze. On the one hand, it is noticeable that all these works still maintain a bottom line: they do not attack Mao Zedong personally. This handsomely dovetails with Deng’s early official judgment on the Cultural Revolution and on Mao, as well as the national fondness for Mao of the early 1990s.On the other hand, each director and artist showed different approaches towards the Cultural Revolution. To divide them roughly, three directors described the negative sides of the Cultural Revolution more vividly and strongly than the two artists. Such diversity is an indicator that the PRC had opened a new era, where individual voices were becoming quietly audible. Yet, at the same time, the Party’s prohibition on showing the five works in Mainland China indicates that the government’s control over the arts was still firm and that the Cultural Revolution remained a sensitive issue.