The South Korean Lee Bul is considered one of the most important artists of Asia who emerged on the international art scene in the 1990s. His artistic practice represents humanity's desire for a utopian existence.
It is a wish that is doomed to failure, but is still driven by humanity's unbridled need to realize impossible dreams.
Born in 1964 to dissident leftist parents in a remote town in South Korea during the military dictatorship of Park chung-hee, is distinguished as an iconoclast whose creativity expands the visionary fantasies of humanity and some of its most prominent futuristic and utopian thinkers.
As an artist he specialized in sculpture in the Hongik University, and in the late 1980s, he rose to prominence on the underground art circuit as a leader and founding member of Museum, a flexible collective of idiosyncratic artists, performers, and musicians still influential today.
Shortly after graduating, Lee Bul began incorporating sculpture into performative work. During a time of turbulence and change in South KoreaThese performances reflected political and social transformations in suggestive and allegorical ways, and their sculptural training served as a launching pad for a work that would shape some of the most futuristic and dystopian realities shaped by the human psyche.
La artistic practiceLee's a, encompassing interpretation, sculpture, and installation, fuses concerns arising from the realities of a South Korea rapidly changing and superurbanization with more universal dreams.
Exploring themes ranging from gender roles in a male society to the failure of utopian dreams, her work presents a visual imaginary that impacts, impresses, and shakes rationality.
In an essay for his exposition of the Mori Art Museum (MAM) In 2012, Lee mentioned: "Having to constantly move around in my childhood taught me certain survival strategies. I learned that you cannot be a revolutionary and hope to survive. "
Your first piece cravings, 1989, reflects the internal anxieties and fears of the artist, as well as those felt by society in general in times of uncertainty and restlessness.
Then, as a personalized metaphor for the experiences of the women of a patriarchal social structure, carried out his performance abortion, of 1990, which saw the artist tie herself and hang from the ceiling upside down, representing her personal narrative about the abortion experience, seeking to involve the community in the dialogue between the body and the self, the actor and the audience.
Transitioning to an exteriorization of your practice, while retaining an element of performance but with the absence of his own body, Lee Bul She has continued her career questioning the concepts of beauty, its transition in time and the social role of women through the introduction of elements of decoration, decomposition and smell.
In 1997, Lee definitely rose to fame with his renowned series Cyborg, that my tangible visualizations of human desire of perfection and the ideal of merging the machine with the organism to transcend the limitations of the human body.
Expanding on the notion of mutation, the Korean artist created the series Monster (1998-2011) y Anagram (1999-2005), biomorphic drawings and sculptures of organic structures are derived from insects and plants that portray a future evolution of the species.
Source: Studio Hye-ryoung min
Continuing her exploration of the impossibility of realizing human desire and the doom of failure, beginning in the 2000s, the South Korean began to build models of utopian cityscapes derived from modernist architectural designs. Product of imagination, these structures represent utopian dreams through dystopian hyper-realities. Incorporating architectural and urban structures, the installations seek the perfect society, but again only point to its inevitable demise.
To this day, Lee Bul continues to imagine utopia, always giving the feeling that we are getting closer, and yet also remembering that we are destined to be disappointed by the inevitable understanding that it is unreachableBut may we always dream Fascinated with these failures, her art is placed at the head of the contemporary artistic trend.