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Imaginary Asia
관리자 - November 30, 2017
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Published on
20 September 2017
Executive Editor
Jinsuk Suh
Nam June Paik Art Center
Imaginary Asia
Asia has undergone a tumultuous collage of political events throughout the 20th century. Macroscopic shifts, such as colonialization, modernization carved a most convoluted contour into the lives of Asian subjects. Complex history calls for complex history-making and recording. The time we now live in demands more multi-dimensional and organic horizons for discussing history.

Nam June Paik Art Center’s special exhibition Imaginary Asia aims to lead the newly emergent trend in contemporary art through a new form of self-embodied history making, in collaboration with artists who subjectively speculate on various historical experiences shared throughout Asia proper such as the lack of modernization as liberated experience, ideological clashes, and exogenously imposed globalization. This new form of history-making will map out a range of methodologies for engaging with Asian history in its serious, sensitive, acute, creative, and generative approach, The seventeen video artists who will be presenting their works in the exhibition, hailing from Asia as well as regions that straddle the geographic borders between Asian and Europe, propose dialogic and imaginative history-making instead of adhering to conventional forms of historuography as a way of documenting and explicating Asia’s past and present. Blurring the boundaries between fact and documentation and fabrication, and documentaries and fiction, they deduce truth through personal imagination, and train their eyes on traces of disjuncture within reality. While recognizing the limits of authoritarian historicism, the artists question the recent cultural phenomenon of replacing historical impossibilities with literary speculations. Rather than ‘History’ as the victors’ records, the exhibition aspires to ‘histories’, varied records we individually and subjectively produce, attempting to cross over the line between multimodal realities and personal imaginations.

The exhibition introduces two forms of video productions. The first category comprise pieces that feature microscopic stories from various regions around Asia. The artists are mainly from East Asia, who will be presenting imaginary expressions of their countries’ historical identities. The second category concerns the global and/or globalized contexts different Asian regions are interconnected through. The artworks in this category deal with cross-cultural references in looking at given borders to Europe, often allowing imaginary unity between the East and West.

Lastly, Imaginary Asia is a moving image exhibition. Video art, initially conceived by Nam June Paik, has been expanded to encompass all moving images with the advances in digital technology in the twenty first century. Across all kinds of media including video, film, and animation, the differentiation between visual genres is now becoming obsolete. Photographs and videos no longer represent reality. The moving image has acquired a most flexible and expandable potential, allowing for the coexistence of fact and fiction, and dissolving the boundary between private and public thought. Imaginary Asia will serve as the seat for multi-layered explorations of the moving image as a hybrid genre in contemporary art.
Curatorial Statements
Imaginary Asia Jinsuk Suh
An Imaginary History of Moving Images Hyun-Suk Seo

Writing the History of ‘Imagination-_Interview with Curators Young-Hee Hwang
List of Works
Ahmad Ghossein
Aida Makoto
Apichatpong Weerasethakul
Dinh Q.Lê
Harun Farocki
Hayoung Kwon
Ho Tzy Nyen
Ji Hye Yeom
Meiro Koizumi
Moon Kyungwon&Jeon Joonho
Nalini Malani
Song Dong
Wael Shawky
Xu Bing
Yang Fudong
Installation Views
(ISBN, 978-89-97128-34-1, 240pages, KRW20,000)
Korea Open Government License
Korea Open Government License
Attribution (BY), Non-commercial (NC), No Derivative Works (ND)
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