Female cartoonists drawing their bodies. I especially like number 2 by Katie Green and number 8 Lucy Knisley. All of the drawings gave me a sense of camaraderie and mutual understanding.
20 Essential K-Pop Songs according to Pitchfork. K-Pop aficionados, do you agree? Are these essential? My K-Pop favorites like Nobody and Sorry, Sorry are a bit dated.
At the beginning of September, the Leeum and Gwangju Biennale are presenting a forum, “Expanding Experiences in Art.” via e-flux
“Enter Pyongyang” is an observational film of the capital of North Korea created by JT Singh and Rob Whitworth. It’s an interesting watch and does show the capital in a less common light. Though, I can’t help but be distracted by what lays beyond the capital and what isn’t pictured.
Despite not living there anymore, Chicago and the people in it are still close to my heart. In honor of that, check out Zane Davis’s new Tumblr dedicated to a Chicago bridge.
For anyone who is curious, I’m based in San Francisco now.
From Jean H. Lee’s Instagram Feed
There are a couple of photographers I follow on Instagram that feature images of North Korea. One of the photographers, Jean H. Lee, was interviewed back in May. Her Instagram handle is newsjean (David Guttenfelder’s handle dguttenfelder is the other; I recommend following both). When asked about what would surprise the outside world about North Korea she says, “When I show my photos and videos of daily life in North Korea, or share anecdotes about what it’s like to live and work with North Koreans, people are most surprised by how “human” North Koreans seem because the picture we usually get is so orchestrated. But like the rest of us, they laugh, they cry, they joke, they fight. They love to tell jokes, they love to dance, they love to sing.”
On another note, The Real DMZ Project opened July 27, the sixtieth anniversary of the cease-fire. According to the project’s website, “The Real DMZ Project is a contemporary art project based on researches of the DMZ (Demilitarized Zone) and the border district. It began in 2012 and will be proceeded as a long term project with interdisciplinary researches and practices. This year, it aims to elaborate on geopolitical meanings of the border region of DMZ in Cheorwon through the frames of art, humanity, sociology, and science with ‘borderline’ as the keyword. Moreover, the project will seek to provide a sustainable platform where the studies of the DMZ conducted in diverse fields can be shared.” For more information visit the review on e-flux where I became aware of the project and The Real DMX Project website.
The conference I attended in Macau had film screening along with the panels. They featured two films about North Korea, each representing a different approach to the situation there: Unfortunate Brothers: Korea’s Reunification Dilemma and Memory of Forgotten War. I only viewed the second but after talking to the director of the screenings I would recommend both of the films.
If you’d like to dig deeper into the visual politics of North Korea I recommend looking into Visual Politics and North Korea: Seeing is Believing by David Shim. It will be published by Routledge later this the fall.
On a lighter note, I prefer this to this.
After this post goes live I’ll have just enjoyed a scone and coffee sitting next to Lake Michigan at sunrise with my parents and husband. A much needed pause from this (wonderful) and crazy summer. If you’d like to follow along you can find me on Instagram. Enjoy the last few days of summer.
Image of Young Jean Lee’s Untitled Feminist Show (source)
Article on Art Radar: nudity to challenge state corruption in China, an interview with Kimsooja (who represents South Korea in the Venice Biennale this year), an interview with Afghanistan’s first female street artist, and finally, I was thrilled to see an article on Young Sun Han! Hang grew up outside of Chicago (and has since lived all over the world). I had the pleasure of meeting him last year. Some of his work addresses his North Korean heritage.
Last spring I had the privilege of seeing Young Jean Lee’s Untitled Feminist Show at the MCA in Chicago. The experience was shocking, liberating, energizing, and hands down the most intelligent and provoking work I’ve seen on a stage. I also saw a talk with Lee before the performance and met her briefly afterwards, she was humble, intelligent, and gracious. This week I was thrilled to see a piece about her “We’re Gonna Die” on the New York Times. Here’s a clip about it on NYT (I love that the next clip is about Avenue Q) and Lee’s Viemo stream.
I always enjoy immersive art via DesignBoom.
Have you heard of the Museum of Old and New Art in Tasmania? The name of the museum doesn’t revel the content of the collection: sex and death. Here’s an article about it from the New Yorker.
Doosan Gallery in Seoul just opened the exhibition The Next Generation. Someone go take a peak for me!
Five films for those who are involved in the arts via Art Radar. I show Un chien Andalou to my students the second day of class!
Hazel Dooney on the gallery system.
Some portraits on DesignBoom: Kim Jong Il framed in pink, colorful x-rays, and lego heads.
A little bit of nepotism, my sister just moved to England and started a new blog to document the experience with her stunning photography and marvelous writing. She used to write here.
On Tuesday evening I was invited to watch the new film Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry streaming in my living room. I invited a few friends over and hosted an intimate screening. The first two-thirds of the film consisted of documentation I had seen from various short films about Ai Weiwei (such as Ai Weiwei: Sunflower Seeds and Who’s Afraid of Ai Weiwei?) but the last part included some clips I hadn’t seen. Regardless, the film was well put together and informative and paints a picture of Ai Weiwei. Though his art is clearly a main thread of the film, they put great emphasis on him as a dissident in China. After the screening director, Alison Klayman, hosted a breif qestion and answer session. I didn’t have time to squeeze a question in and would like to share some of my questions here. Full disclosure, many of my questions are based on a class a took last semester called Post Asia. If you’re interested in a more thorough review read this article on Art Journal. I definitely recommend seeing it in the theatre when it is released in July.
Is Never Sorry showing in China? Does the Chinese public have access to and know about Ai Weiwei’s actions?
I am curious about language. So much of the film is in English and the majority of the tweets highlighted in the movie are in English. Despite that, many of Ai Weiwei’s works comment on Chinese culture and people.
Who is Ai Weiwei’s audience? Does the group he is representing have access to the sources (Twitter, Blogging, etc.) that he uses to promote his ideas?
Finally, I want to congratulate Alison Klayman. She chose to tackle incredibly volatile subject matter and she executed it beautifully. I greatly look forward to her next project.