Wednesday, September 01, 2010

Feat of Clay

Recently I stumbled across a shop selling art in the Gwangbok Underground Shopping Area near Nampodong's Lotte Department Store. There's nothing particularly unusual about this - the underground shopping district is extensive and there are a number of artworks on display, but they are usually the kind of typical Korean fare popular with tourists and apartment living rooms. Colours are often limited to black and white. What made this particular shop stand out were the vibrant reds and greens enticing the visitor inside.

The particular artist concerned has taken to updating traditional Korean black and white flat paintings with red and green coloured clay which also adds a relief and therefore more depth to the work. I doubt it's the case that what the artist is doing is unique, but in all my time trudging through the back-streets of Busan I've never seen anything quite like it. It's easy for art to stagnate and become almost a stereotype of itself, but it's exciting to think that despite the temptation to pump out the old clichés, that someone out there in Busan is prepared to take an old favourite and give it an updated spin. More images are available on the artist's (정창원 - Jung Chang-Won) website.

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