English | Korean

Barricade in Image

We walk on a street. There comes a moment when I look into the merely ordinary surrounding landscape attentively. It is a familiar landscape, but not so natural. It seems as if it is in vigilance towards some other thing in its surrounding. New landscapes endlessly come in between landscapes that have disappeared or those which may exist now but will disappear; it is as if somewhere along the line, elements that form them have lost intimacy among each other and has come to exist simply
as individuals.

It was when the artist passed by a construction site while riding a bus a few years ago. There were big barricades in front of the field, which was to be torn down, covered in massive and heavy blue cloths. Every time he passed by the place, he would look at the landscape from inside the bus and agonize. The agony materialized into a question on why must such an ordinary landscape approach us in an ordinary way? What he took notice of, then, were the paintings painted on the barricades. They were paintings constituted of trees, lakes, rainbows and such, which were not very well made. The painted barricades were covering the blue tents, which were also used for covering the demolition site, and people passing by in front of them were going their own ways, in between paintings, which were not at all an everyday thing, in the middle of reality. Between the artist and the ruins of blue tents, there were barricade paintings. It was an experience brought by the landscape which existed in the middle of the artist’s reality and another reality.

The landscape may be one of many middle landscapes that are in the boundary of actual and virtual. Barricades made into images in between the everyday life city and the city which has temporarily become a ruin, a place where time is paused in between the disappeared residence and the residence which will soon be created, and the artificial or the so very elaborate natural objects; these are the middle landscapes vaguely recognized by all of us.

The artist feels that the nature of landscape we speak of may already have disappeared a long time ago. We call the surrounding buildings, trees, everything we see and everything that comes into our hands, merely ‘landscapes’. Although it may be a little abstract, most people have a sort of a fantasy on the word ‘landscape’. It is very sentimental and at the same time, ideal, often having a clear shape. Landscapes existing inside people in that way are, in the end, merely recompositions of past memories. On the contrary, every visible things existing within the big boundary called ‘reality’, are landscapes and not landscapes at the same time. It is because within it, there is an absence of relation among elements constituting a landscape which obviously exists but cannot be seen. The surrounding views are vaguely recognized by us as similar landscapes, and at that very moment, we exist inside the system called ‘landscape’. We are living ambiguously, caught in the middle landscapes.

This time, An Gyungsu’s work embodies objects observed in public places such as the park. From the inside of the boundary of landscape where personal and public principles are commonly used at the same time, the artist is representing the landscape, which only existed in people’s thoughts, soundly, to the outside. Modern landscapes are very complicated. It is because they change and also change us. This may be why we are always in vigilance towards our surroundings. Like the objects which the artist had drawn, they are objects of our ambiguous recognition existing in the middle in such an unrealistic way.