5 November - 23 December 2011
Transparent Process is a new series of neon works by Seoul-based artist Namhee Kwon. Neon is central to Kwon’s current practice which includes text-based works such as the site-specific installation Meet Me at the Gyeonggi Museum of Modern Art (2010). Non-alphabetic characters such as numbers and symbols are integral to works such as Measurements (2010), an installation that measures a structure’s height at various intervals and Quiet World (2002 – Present), a semiotics-inspired series of works that centres around a road sign that “depicts” silence.
Transparent Process presents Kwon’s recent installation works: -1- (2011), -2- (2011) and -3- (2011). In Transparent Process Kwon’s installation of white neon numbers in Untitled Gallery transforms the space into an oversize book, with each wall reminiscent of a blank page.
Neon connotes the public dimension, via signage and advertisements, its statements emboldened through the medium’s theatricality. Kwon’s work in Transparent Process subverts the conventional, commercial role of neon as a medium for outdoor advertising; in contrast, the works are placed inside the gallery space to create an installation that mimics a book devoid of content, stripped to its essence of blank pages and numbers.
Neon is employed by numerous Contemporary artists most notably Tracey Emin’s handwritten neon statements that express a personal narrative, as well as work by Glenn Ligon and Cerith Wyn Evans. Bruce Nauman’s neon works from the 1960s onwards reference elements of commercial signage, such as commands in large-scale capital letters. In contrast, Kwon’s works in Transparent Process occupy each wall in order to distort the scale and placement of each number; as such, the visual perception of the space is transformed.
Namhee Kwon (MA Goldsmiths, 2002) lives and works in Seoul, South Korea. Exhibitions include Closer to Contemporary Art (2011), Gyeonggi Museum of Modern Art, South Korea; Transparent Process (2011), Tenderpixel, London; and Close Encounter (2010), Jeju Museum of Art, South Korea.
Transparent Process is in collaboration with Tenderpixel.