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Vancouver Art Gallery presents KIMSOOJA Unfolding

Vancouver Art Gallery presents KIMSOOJA Unfolding an exhibition on view January 26, 2014.

KIMSOOJA Unfolding is the first retrospective exhibition to assess the thirty-year career of the Korean-born, Paris- and New York-based artist, whose powerful and provocative work has earned her a prominent position as one of the most innovative artists working today. Kimsooja is currently participating for the fifth time at the 2013 Venice Biennale, officially representing South Korea.

Since the 1980s, Kimsooja has made a significant contribution to contemporary art. North American audiences were introduced to her work in the early 1990s when she began constructing bottari—objects wrapped in colourful Korean fabrics—during a residency at MoMA PS1 in New York. Her adaptation of this Korean tradition of using fabric to bundle and transport domestic items not only garnered the international art community’s attention, but also became a formal and symbolic device that she continued to use throughout her career.

The Vancouver Art Gallery first presented Kimsooja’s work in the 1997 touring exhibition Contemporary Art in Asia: Traditions/Tensions, and in an outdoor exhibition CUE: Artists’ Videos in 2010. “We are thrilled to be staging the first comprehensive survey of Kimsooja’s work, as this reflects the Gallery’s deep commitment to exhibiting work by international artists. The questions she poses about gender, identity and our relationship to the everyday go beyond a local context and have a powerful global relevance,” said Director Kathleen S. Bartels.

While the scale and media of the artist’s work vary widely, what remains constant is an engagement with questions of identity in the face of change and social flux. The exhibition highlights works that address notions of time, memory and displacement, and the relationship between the human body and the material world.

“This exhibition offers an unprecedented opportunity to trace the development of Kimsooja’s practice,” said the Gallery’s Chief Curator and Associate Director Daina Augaitis. “For the first time, Kimsooja’s early textile pieces from the 1980s, her Deductive Objects, the large site-specific installations such as Bottari Truck, as well as her acclaimed multi-channel video projections are presented together in this significant retrospective.”

The exhibition is accompanied by a major book KIMSOOJA Unfolding, co-published by the Vancouver Art Gallery and Hatje Cantz (Berlin), which features over 100 images of the artist’s work as well as essays by Daina Augaitis, Mary Jane Jacob, David Morgan, Selene Wendt and Suh Young-Hee.

Vancouver Art Gallery
750 Hornby Street
Vancouver, BC V6Z 2H7