Hiding in Plain Sight

Suki Seokyeong Kang

b. 1977, Seoul, Korea
Lives and works in Seoul, Korea

Suki Seokyeong Kang’s research-driven practice—consisting of painting, sculpture, video, performance, and multimedia installations—investigates notions of the narratives of individuals and time. By focusing on singular and collective interactions with objects, her work reflects on how historical and present actions of the individual affect the future whole societies.

Suki Seokyeong Kang, Mat 55 × 40 — Bolds #20-01, 2019-2020, painted steel, woven dyed Hwamunseok, thread, wood frame, brass bolts, leather scraps, 22-7/16" × 16-9/16" × 6-5/16" (57 cm × 42.1 cm × 16 cm), each overall dimensions variable

The present multi-part installation incorporates dyed hwamunseok—handwoven sedge mats used in chunaengmu, a traditional Korean court dance—positioned on the walls of the gallery. In serialized reliefs such as Mat 55 × 40 — Bolds #20-01 (2019–20), Kang merges cultural tradition with form. Each rectangular unit is backed with hwamunseok dyed in vibrant shades and shifts forward into space through threaded compositions of grids—which Kang describes as having a “visible and invisible logic” and whose form is instructed by jeongganbo, a Korean musical notation. By utilizing the natural tensions and harmonies between materiality and form, Kang’s works effectively play between two- and three-dimensions.

Suki Seokyeong Kang, Mat Black Mat 122 × 163 #20-49, 2020, woven dyed Hwamunseok, thread, painted steel, 63" × 49-3/8" (160 cm × 125.4 cm)

Kang’s overall minimalist and modular forms—consistently referencing and subverting tradition—become both material and conceptual frameworks, creating their own environment and community of form and function. Each object becomes a part of a whole. In previous installation series, such as Land Sand Strand, shown at the Liverpool Biennial in 2018 and the Venice Biennale in 2019, Kang included performers to interact with her space furthering her exploration of space through choreographed activations.

Suki Seokyeong Kang, Heavy Line #20-01, 2019-2020, dyed rush, brass, thread, 21-5/8" × 55-1/8" × 1-5/16" (54.9 cm × 140 cm × 3.3 cm)
Suki Seokyeong Kang, Tender Meander #20-05, 2020, painted steel, thread, wire, tree trunk, leather scraps, nail, wooden wheels, 59-3/4" × 27-3/8" × 9-7/8" (151.8 cm × 69.5 cm × 25.1 cm)
Suki Seokyeong Kang, Narrow Meadow #19-07, 2014-2019, assembled units: painted steel, thread, wood, brass bolts, Leather scraps, wooden wheels, 52" × 15-3/4" (132.1 cm × 40 cm)
Suki Seokyeong Kang, Mat 61 × 81 #19-17, 2019, painted steel, thread, wood frame, wheels, 69-1/4" × 25-3/4" × 15-3/4" (175.9 cm × 65.4 cm × 40 cm), approximate
Suki Seokyeong Kang, Heavy Round 340 — hole #20-01, 2020, painted steel, woven dyed Hwamunseok, thread, 10-5/8" × 13-3/8" (27 cm × 34 cm)
Suki Seokyeong Kang

Suki Seokyeong Kang (b. 1977, Seoul, Korea) lives and works in Seoul, Korea and earned an MA in 2012 from the Royal College of Art, London. She received an MFA (2002) and BFA (2000) from Ewha Woman’s University, Seoul, where she is currently a professor of Korean painting. Important solo exhibitions of her work include Foot and Moon at the Audio-Visual Pavilion, Seoul (2015); Black Mat Oriole at ICA Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (2018); Suki Seokyeong Kang at MUDAM Luxembourg, Luxembourg City (2019); and Square See Triangle at the Buk-Seoul Museum of Art, Seoul (2019-2020). Kang’s work has been featured at Bloomberg New Contemporaries, London (2012) as well as the Gwangju Biennale (2016, 2018); Liverpool Biennial (2018); Shanghai Biennale (2018); and Venice Biennale (2019). She was recently awarded the Baloise Art Prize (2018) and has participated in residencies at the National Museum of Contemporary Art, Seoul (2005); Cite Internationale des Arts, Paris (2011); Triangle Artist Workshop, New York (2012); and the Seoul Museum of Art, Korea (2014). Kang’s work resides in numerous public collections worldwide, including the Los Angeles County Museum, Los Angeles; MMCA (National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art), Seoul; MUDAM Luxembourg, Luxembourg City; Leeum, Samsung Museum of Art, Seoul; Seoul Museum of Art, Seoul; and Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, among others.