Lives and Works: Seoul
Osang Gwon (b. 1974) is an artist from Seoul, South Korea, who received his MFA from Hongik University. He began his career with his "Deodorant Type" series, which capture his subjects in life-size, 3-dimensional forms sculpted from a material called iso-pink, as well as hundreds of photographs that attempt to capture the totality of his models. Gwon has been widely recognized for his innovative use of photography and his pragmatic, yet radical consideration of the sculptural medium. The "Deodorant Type" series challenge the boundaries of medium specificity in our increasingly immaterial culture of digitalized efficiency. The unified compositions of these hundreds of photographs not only mimic the structure of our optics, but also remind us of the fact that we are bombarded by thousands of images in our everyday lives.
Gwon’s oeuvre also includes his notable "Flat" series, which comprise a photographic series of typological arrangements of magazine cutouts. At once lured in and alienated by the spectacle of these luxury goods, Gwon spends hours pouring over magazines. With a simple wire, he renders these flat images into objects to be assembled in a contemporary still life. In doing so, he evokes the grand tradition of Baroque vanitas paintings. Osang Gwon’s work has been exhibited worldwide and belongs in esteemed collections such as the National Museum of Contemporary Art (Seoul), Busan Museum of Art, Gyeonggi Museum of Modern Art, the Embassy of Switzerland, the Asano Institute, the Zabludowicz Collection, and the Arario Collection.
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