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<nettime> Jong Eun Lee: Information about the Gwangjy Beinnale 2002 (Korea)

From: (Jong Eun Lee)

P_A_U_S_E, for a new start

Date : Mar 29th-Jun 29th, 2002
Hosted by : Gwangju Biennale Foundation / City of Gwangju
Venues : Around the Joong Oe Park / The May 18 Liberty park / The Railways
Retired from Service in Gwangju

The 4th Gwangju Biennale places its significance on expanding art for the
public and cultural communication in the new stream of contemporary art.
Under this orientation, various symposiums, workshops, and different form of
art practices, that lead spectators to participation and seek realistic
alternative, will be held in parallel with the exhibition. The exhibition of
the 4th Gwangju Biennale consists of 4 Projects in the theme of "P_A_U_S_E"
instead of dividing exhibitions into main and special ones. Especially 2 of
them and other festive events will interact with the daily life of people
outside of the exhibition halls.

In Progress - Project 1: Pause
Wan-kyung Sung. Charles Esche. Hou Hanru.

The 4th Gwangju Biennale has 'Pause' as its main theme and will focus on the
need for critical reflections on the current global situation of
contemporary art. It will pay particular attention to the dynamic shifts
flowing through contemporary art against the mutating context caused by
globalization and the fields within which artists position themselves.

The Biennale will emphasize the necessity of negotiating different systems
of time and space, especially the tension between speed, duration, fullness
and emptiness and, hence, between different reactions to the globalizing
world from various regional cultures. To bear witness to and articulate
alternative thoughts, proposals and space-making in relation to the global
capitalist hegemony and its institutional market infrastructure become an
indispensable task for us. Therefore, they are at the very center of the
upcoming biennale.

In addition, and considering the geo-cultural position of the Biennale
itself, it is also necessary to focus on inter-continental exchanges and
negotiations between the Asia-Pacific region and the rest of the planet.
Working as an international team in close collaboration, the curators have
chosen to witness the reality that the Asian-Pacific region is becoming one
of the most dynamic areas in terms of contemporary art and cultural
activities. As a counterpoint, and taking into account the geographic limits
of our personal experience, a second emphasis will be on the new European
scene, particularly its manifestations in the off-sites of the north, east
and south.

Our proposal is that the Biennale should become an event city created
through close, interactive collaborations and diverse interventions among
the artists, architects and curators. Instead of a conventional exhibition
of "successful" art works, we have opted to develop the event into an
adventure with exchange and experiment with the public happening in the
specific sites of the biennale. In this way the title 'Pause' will focus
attention on the necessity of human contact, reconsideration and
thoughtfulness for the perception of art and society. The speed and size of
the event will conflict with the equal desire to pause and think - with
conversation, real and recorded, as the medium through which this tension is

The structure of the project for this Biennale will consist of three levels
of engagement for artists and the public. Firstly up to 25 alternative
spaces or artists' run groups from Asia and Europe will be invited to
auto-curate a presentation of their communities. Secondly, a number of
artists working with architecture and architects on the verge of art will
construct small-scale pavilions within and around the Biennale hall.
Thirdly, a number of artists will simply be invited to show their work or
make new projects in Gwangju that expand on the ideas of the Biennale as a
whole. This structure will bring out the variety of engagements that art
makes possible - from individual work to collective or collaborative
practice and on to specific kinds of community representation.

The Biennale should be the beginning of a long-term project to be developed
in the future. It should leave its mark in history and a legacy in the
region. New issues and spaces for trans-disciplinary and trans-cultural
experiments will be generated that test the limits of contemporary art as
usually defined. As an alternative to established concepts and institutional
frameworks, this project should provide further opportunities for critical
reflection on the culture and art activities of our time. Previous Biennales
have attracted audiences of over one million and this proposal will
introduce a huge cross-section of the public to the most contemporary work,
while providing them with new models for subsequently engaging with art. As
such, it is one of the most exciting international opportunities to connect
art to current social and political developments.

Wan-kyung Sung is the Artistic Director of the Gwangju Biennale 2002.
Currently a professor of art theory at Inha University. Mr. Sung has had a
distinguished career as an artist, critic and curator on Korean and
international projects. Mr. Sung's curatorial projects are: the Gwangju
Biennale 1995, 1997; the Fukui International Video Biennale 1993; the Paris
Biennale 1981; Global Conceptualism, Point of Origin: 1950s-1980s, (1999),

Charles Esche is a curator and writer based in Edinburgh, Scotland and
Copenhagen, Denmark. He is the Director of the Rooseum Center for
Contemporary Art, Malmo, Sweden and a research fellow at Edinburgh College
of Art where he works with the Proto Academy. As an independent curator he
has produced New British Art 2000: Intelligence at the Tate Gallery, London,
Amateur: Variable Research Initiatives at Goterborg, 2000, etc.

Hou Hanru is an art critic and an independent curator based in Paris since
1990. Currently, he is a professor at the Rijksakademie van Beeldende
Kunsten, Amsterdam, Netherlands, a member of the Global Advisory Committee
of Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, USA, and a French correspondent of Flash
Art International. He has curated numerous exhibitions including: Shanghai
Biennale 2000; Cities on the Move (1997-2000); French Pavilion, Venice
Biennale 1999, etc.

In progress-Project2: THERE: Sites of Korean Diaspora
Yong Soon Min

THERE: Sites of Korean Diaspora will showcase contemporary works in a
variety of media by artists of Korean ancestry who reside outside of Korea.
This project will be a multi-faceted and multi-disciplinary exhibition that
integrates contemporary art and media with historical and interactive
displays and educational programs. This project is conceived, designed and
curated by Yong Soon Min, an artist, professor and independent curator who
resides in Los Angeles. The educational component of the project is
supervised by Dr. Soo-young Chin, an Anthropologist by training. The feature
length film and independent video component to this special thematic
exhibition will be curated by filmmaker and film producer Paul Yi. The
extensive level of research that has informed this project has been guided
by a range of advisors from different parts of the world.

THERE will focus on five key cities of significant Korean diasporic
population that are also diverse historically and geographically  - Los
Angeles (U.S.), Sao Paulo (Brazil), Almaty (Kazakhstan), Yanji (China) and
Osaka (Japan). These five sites encompass the broad diasporic history, from
the earliest diasporic formations in China in the mid 1800's to the more
recent settlements of the past several decades in Sao Paulo. The exhibition
will offer insights into the unique qualities of each of these distinctive
locals while at the same time offering overviews to link these sites to the
broader global history and dynamics of the Korean diaspora.

Much of Korean recorded history can be better understood in terms of the
significant migrations and dispersions of its people. In contemporary times,
this dispersion has been accelerated and globalized in scope. It is
estimated that nearly 6 million Koreans live in 160 different countries of
the world. Today, the Korean diaspora is the fourth largest diaspora in the
world in terms of the percentage of Koreans outside of Korea to those in the
country of origin, following those in numbers of Chinese, the Jewish peoples
and later the Italians.

Any study of diaspora has to be located within the economic and cultural
shifts identified with global capitalism as well as "space-time
compression," the feeling of time being faster and distances closer, which
we experience as a result of new technologies that have helped to bring
about these shifts, all of which have left many people groping for their
bearings in the world. These conditions contribute to a heightened interest
in place, an increased correlation of spatial positioning and identity,
particularly among those in the diaspora, whose everyday lives are inflected
with notions of home, the margin, the local as well as the global in the
sense of a distant home.

In examining the Korean diaspora experience and history through it cultural
production, this exhibition hopes to give insight as well as raise many
questions about issues of identity in general. How is one's identity
expressed or understood? How does one's sense of identity vary among
generations? Are we in a "post-ethnicity" period as has been declared by
some in the cultural arena in the U.S or have the events of 9/11 altered the
terms of the debate and tensions between Nationalisms and Diasporic
frameworks in which ethnicity is once again "front and center?"

The continuing repercussions of 9/11 have caused the postponement of
research travel to three of the five sites. In November the research team
will be traveling to Kazakhstan, China and Japan. In August the team visited
and documented Sao Paulo and their home base of Los Angeles.

This project will feature about 20 artists of Korean ancestry from various
parts of the world who have not been included in a previous Biennale nor
have had major exhibits in Korea recently. All of these artists work in
contemporary idioms. In my selection of artists, I attempt to avoid any
essentializing notions of ethnicity and authenticity at the same time that
I'm aware that there is always the risk of imposing an over-arching notion
of "Koreanness" on each and every selected work in the exhibition.
Sculptural installations by artists such as Lina Kim from Sao Paulo or Wonju
Lim from Los Angeles seem apparently devoid of any indications of their
Koreanness. Despite appearances, my intent in examining the Korean diaspora
is to affirm that issues of diaspora are undeniably central to the immigrant
experience and to raise complex questions about the identity of Koreans
wherever they are in terms of how "Koreanness" is defined or understood and
whether this sense of Koreanness transcends the cultural contexts created by
borders and local practices.

Yong-soon Min graduated from University of California, Berkeley (MFA, MA,
BA) and completed Whitney Museum Independent Study Program in NY. Since
1999, she has been a professor at University of California, Irvine. She
curated numerous exhibitions and actively participated in the current art
scene including: Girifalco Fortress, Cortona Italy Flight of the Falcon,
2001, and London Biennial at the Centre For Freudian Analysis and Research,
Imaging the Wonderboard.

In progress -Project4: Site-off-Sight
Guyon Chung


City moves and changes all the time as it is a living thing. Less than
10,000 people lived in Gwangju in the early 20th century, but over 1.3
million people live in the city now. For the last 30 years, the city has
become much bigger and development & construction fever did not pass by the

About 10km railways that crossed the eastern half circle of Gwangju stopped
(pause) from service(off the rails/site off) because it was considered that
it caused heavy traffic, since it is crossing over 20 intersections,
frequent accidents, noise pollution, and invasions of private residential

It seems that the empty land is waiting for a new connection(on the
city/sight on) with the city. We should consider that the land has special
meaning compared to other public places. It was outskirt when the rail was
built, but it is in the middle of Gwangju now. Thus, it has got away with
the wave of city expansion, so it is a'spatial seal', a vestige of withheld
development. In other words, it is a'seal of time'while the city has grown.
Since the rails and crossties were removed, the site looks like it waits for
new railways to be built. The space from the past overlaps with the space of
the present, so the site is like a keyhole to read Gwangju into a new time
and space. Namely, Project ? is expected to operate as a key to open the
future of Gwangju.

The modern relic in Gwangju

The railway retired from service is not just an empty space but a 'modern
relic' that is a living potential, a linked surface not a line and a
connected sight not just a railway. It reminds a linking or connection not a
boundary or severance. It is a new future not a place of rubble, which will
be abandoned, and nature has already tried to restore itself as it was.

It is a site with lots of questions, which we should ponder over and over
again how we will use it with various viewpoints before we use it. It is
rare, even anywhere in the world, to have retired railways from service in
the middle of a city. Thus, in consideration of these facts, this exhibition
has been prepared to have the city meet public art and to probe
possibilities that will give the rebirth to the city as a 'cultural city'.

Guyon Chung studied crafts at Seoul National University, Architecture
D'Amenegement at Ecole National Superior Des Art Decoratifs(ENSAD),
architecture at Unite Pedagogique D'Architecture No. 6(U.P.A.6) Paris,
Institute D'Urbanism at Universite Paris?. After getting architect
diploma(D.P.L.G) in France, opened an architectural firm in Paris. Working
as a chief architect of Guyon Architects Association, a member of steering
committee at Seoul School of Architecture, and invited professor of
architect department at Korea National University of Art at present.
Recently, awarded Achun Architect Award by Korea National Architect
Association. His magnum works are a catholic church, Kaywon School of Art
and Design, Dong-myong High School and outbuilding plan of the French
Embassy in Korea.

Planning themes

The railways retired from service in Gwangju is the subject of Project?. The
general principle of the project is to preserve most of its original form by
intervening the site temporarily with installing structures.  However, it
should be stayed as a cultural property and an artistic suggestion of
Gwangju at the same time.

Recycling  Many wastes are still in the site such as crossties, rubbles, and
even things that has thrown away. Proper formative artworks can be made from
the traces by gathering and using them.

Land Art  The paused land has been used as vegetable gardens by residents
near by. The green plowland, crossties, and rubbles can also be green
texture compositions to make a new sight.

Open-air Museum  Namgwangju Station Building had built in 1930, but it was
unfortunately destroyed with its history and memories last year.  The site
will be a memorial place to experience the past with connecting the traces
such as railways and people, Namgwangju Market, platform, and broken bridge.

Architectural Landscape  Land has its meaning and characteristic where it
lies. Simple structures or temporary structures can be installed to make us
consider the land new while examine the meaning of itself.

Connection  Building the rails diminished or interrupted cultural, historic
values in a certain way. The values can be recovered by connecting the
bridge, alleyways, hills, etc. near the railways or it is a way to
reconsider the values by making a symbolic place at the site as a terminal
station like Gwangju Station.

Nomadic Shelter  Nomadic lifestyle grows as urbanization proceeds. As
movable houses are created, the city-life moves with the city. That kind of
city-life can be considered as a wisdom of life not a negative lifestyle. It
is possible that the temporary structures enrich the characteristic of the

Open-air Classroom  There are over 20 schools near by the railways, and the
students and residents often come and go that way. It can be used as a
urban-ecological classroom, which let students observe and study urban
ecology of the city, so they can have right recognition to look at the
nature and ecology.

Urban Ecology  The urban ecology of the city appears at the railways while
vegetation and aged traces are there. As time goes by, people can experience
the changes of the environment.

Promenade & Daily Sports Experience  Simple artistic structures and
facilities can let people enjoy promenading and sport activities, which
provides citizens with special meanings of the daily life.

Visionary  What will be like the future of the city and urban life?  The
basic idea of realizing the future of the site is to use artists'
imaginations while air and sound are considered as basic resources of
artworks with possibly using sculptures or equipments.

Examples of the Uses of Public Space

Juan Aparicio marine promenade, 1996-1999, by Carme Pinos A promenade, a
plaza, and an open-air swimming pool that accentuate the beauty of the
Torrevieja Sea Front, in Alicante, Spain.

Platform over the Ronda del Mig, by Olga Tarraso,1996-97 A pedestrian
walkway, in Barcelona, constructed over an underground parking lot and
traffic-filled streets.

Anarchy, 1999, by Schie 2.0 A proposal for the city Almere, in the
Netherlands, combining art and an urbanism that retraces the layout of
existing streets at seven sites in the district.

Insel-Hombroich The Insel-Hombroich Foundation has given new life to the
outskirts of Düsseldorf, Germany, by cleaning up the environment in and
around a former American Army Base. Today, it is an cological park designed
by Karl Heinrich Muller, in 1983, where one can go to visit galleries and
artists' studios, and to participate in workshops.

Duisburg-Nord Park, 1991-2000, by Peter Latz An ecological park renovated
from an abandoned industrial site in the iron and coal region of the Ruhr,

Lausanne Gardens A festival throughout the city of Lausanne, Switzerland, of
thirty-four gardens chiseled from seemingly unusable sites such as spaces
between buildings and lots abutting train tracks.

The Curator's Meeting

>From Oct. 25 to 29, 2001, the Gwangju Biennale 2002 Curator's Meeting was
held in the presence of Wan-kyung Sung(Artistic Director), Charles Esche,
Hou Hanru,(Project1 Co-Curators), Yong-soon Min(Project2 Curator), Guyon
Chung(Project4 Curator), Chang Yong Ho, Young-joon Kim(Architects for Space
Design), Manu Park(Director of Exhibitions) and Exhibition Staffs. This
report summarizes the discussions on general issues including: direction and
conception of projects, project composition, gallery design, budget
operation, publication, publicity, etc.

Main Issues of the Curator's Meeting

Curators for each project, architects for the exhibition space design and
exhibition staff members shared and developed their opinions on each
participating artist and art group, on the procedures for each project and
on possible problems emerging from the procedures themselves. They also
discussed specific issues concerning possible participating artists, their
art and their art's meaning, since they will be at the heart of the
biennale. After four straight days of meetings, they ended by selecting
artists. What follows is information distilled from these meetings about
each project.

Project 1  'PAUSE'

The curators have high hopes that PAUSE, which is the theme of next year's
Gwangju Biennale, will be the most ambitious and subversive alternative
project ever undertaken in the biennale world. The title PAUSE not only
means "to cease an action" but also "to prepare for another action." The
curators think that exhibition organizers, including themselves, should in
general throw out preconceived ideas, and specifically think about
alternative artists and groups, relationships between artistic and
non-artistic things, concepts at the source of successful artworks,
exhibitions, and artistic context, design of exhibition spaces,
spatial-geographical movement of visual constructs, and so on. They hope to
reverse the custom of setting up a result and subordinating process to it.
Instead, the curators will emphasize artists' creative projects and
dialogues, and flexible processes that flow from the senses. Their plan is
to encourage a "living" process where they won't know until the last minute
what's going to happen in the self-curated spaces or how the spaces will
live next to one another. To overcome time and space restrictions, they plan
to mobilize a series of technical innovations. What follows is the core

Composition of the Exhibition

PAUSE will take place in four out of the five galleries under the following
three structural and spatial categories:

Alternative art groups

Primarily from Asia and Europe, these groups of artists are developing key
alternative strategies to negotiate relationships with institutions,
organizations, and society itself. For the biennale, they will create new
works for a new city, Gwangju, by arranging spaces, exhibiting new versions
of existing works, making video presentations, networking throughout the
region, and doing performance art. Visitors to the proposed galleries'
alternative spaces will also be participants. Eight of these alternative art
groups will arrive in Korea in advance of the biennale opening to
participate in workshop lectures, discussions, field investigations, and
publications on art for city spaces such as Seoul and Gwangju. The results
will be exhibited in one of the galleries as a "living archive."

Fifteen pavilions on the theme of PAUSE

To realize PAUSE, artists and architects will build fifteen small-scale,
open pavilions, in and around the exhibition hall, whose purpose will be to
provide a pause in bustling city life. Pavilions will take on the identities
of a store, a cafe, a garden, a house, a cube, a building, and so on, in the
goal of inviting people to stop, enter, and participate. Some of these
pavilions will represent scenes of daily life and some will present vacant
spaces, such as Eko Prawoto, who proposes housing for homeless people in
Indonesia; or the group Bow Wow, from Japan, which inserts structures into
the gaps between big buildings to create alternative housing projects; or
AES, from Russia, which works with Islamic forms of architecture and
interior decoration.

Commissioned Art on Time and Emptiness

A selection of existing and commissioned artworks will deal with time,
duration, emptiness, rupture, and alternative proposals to mainstream art,
formal structures, and established artists' styles. For instance, On Kawara
will create a sound work, Michael Lin will make a floor painting, Esra Ersen
will work with local school children, Sisley Xhafa will perform a radical
political piece.

Exhibition Space Design

The PAUSE exhibition spaces will be designed by the innovative architects
Chang Yong Ho and Young-joon Kim based on the proposals of the three
co-curators and participating artists. They will overhaul previous
exhibition space models and maximize pavilion conditions such as high
ceilings, natural light and open, non-pillared space to create a welcoming
atmosphere for biennale visitors. Four main design concepts will underpin
the exhibition spaces - pause in the city, pause in the suburbs, pause in
the village, and pause in the urban wilderness - and create urban feeling,
rhythm and participation. A convenient exhibition office inside one of the
pavilions will amplify this ambience and facilitate communication among
curators, artists, coordinators and visitors.

Practical Matters

The majority of artists participating in Project 1 will come from Europe and
especially Asia. The curators' goal here is to attract international
attention to Asian art and reinforce relatively weak art networking in Asia.
Participating artists and young curators from Japan, Malaysia and Singapore
will share experience and training programs with one another. Biennale
curators, artists, and staff will budget a limited amount of money and
manpower and make every effort to secure additional money, manpower, and
equipment from the government, business, and individuals. The organizers
will make use of international media and art organizations to publicize the
Gwangju Biennale. Chapters of the biennale catalog will directly reflect the
concrete process of creating art in Gwangju: "PAUSE," "Pavilions,"
"Networking," "Forums," "Artworks." Its editors hope the catalog will become
a vital book of references to artistic experiments and exhibitions.

Participating Artists

The curators have made an initial selection of artists and groups in the
framework of the three structural and spatial categories. Additional
selections will be made through December.

Groups: Artis Pro Active(Malaysia), Big Sky Mind(Malaysia), Cemeti Art
House(Indonesia), Casco(Netherlands), De Geuzen(Netherlands), Digital Arts
Lab(Israel), Foksal Foundation(Poland), Glassbox(France), IT Park(Taiwan),
Loft(China), Mowelfund(Philippines), Oda Projesi(Turkey), Para-Site(Hong
Kong), Plastique Kinetic Worms(Singapore), Project 304(Thailand),
Protoacademy(UK), Ruangrupa(Indonesia), Superflex(Denmark), University
Bangsar Utama(Malaysia), Uggabat(Thailand), Videotage(Hong Kong), Forum
A(Korea), Loop(Korea).

Pavilions: AES(Russia), Atelier Bow Wow(Japan), Claude L??ue(France), Eko
Prawoto(Indonesia), Lim Tzay Chuen(Singapore), Marko Peljhan(Slovenia),
Michael Elmgreen and Ingar Dragset(Denmark), Shinichi Ogawa/Alan
Johnston(Japan/UK), Yan Lei/Fujie(Hong Kong), Yang Jiechang(China), Yin
Xiuzhen(China), Sora Kim(Korea), Hong-suk Gim(Korea).

Artists: Andar Manik/Marintan Sirait(Indonesia), Bluent Sangar(Turkey),
Carsten Nicolai(Germany), Geng Jianyi(China), Gu Dexin(China), Lin
Michael(Taiwan), Mark Lewis(Canada), On Kawara(Japan), Olaf
Nicolai(Germany), Sean Snyder(USA), Wilhelm Sasnal(Poland), Zhang
Peili(China), Arahmaiani(Indonesia), Antonio Gallego(France), Esra
Ersen(Turkey), Halil Altindere(Turkey), Hilary Lloyd(UK), Jens
Haaning(Denmark), Johanna Billing(Sweden), Joseph Grigely(USA), Judy Freya
Sybanyan(Philippines), Liew Kung Yu(Malaysia), Lin Yilin(China), Lyn
L?enstein(UK), Matthew Ngui(Singapore), Nedko Solakov(Bulgaria), Nina
Fischer Maraon el sani(Germany), Otto Berchem(USA), Post8(Taiwan), Sislej
Xhafa(Kosovo), Tsuyoshi Ozawa(Japan), Veronique Boudier(France), Jea-whan
Joo(Korea), Yeon-doo Jung(Korea), Joo-kyung Yoon(Korea), Heung-soon
Im(Korea), Chang Younghae Heavy Industry(Korea), Sang-gil Kim(Korea),
Soon-gi Kim(Korea), Seung-ho Yoo(Korea), Bul-dong Park(Korea), Neung-kyung
Sung(Korea), Jin Ham(Korea), Jeong-a Koo(Korea), Hak-chul Shin(Korea).

Project 2

THERE: Sites of the Korean Diaspora

THERE focuses on the art of  five key sites in the Korean Diaspora: Los
Angeles, California; Sao Paulo, Brazil;  Almaty, Kazakhstan; Yanbian, China;
and Osaka, Japan. It will be a multidisciplinary exhibition integrating
contemporary art and media with interactive historical and educational
displays. THERE will analyze from the viewpoint of the "settlement" the
identities of the Korean diaspora, and multiculturalism and race in today's
world through conflicting structures of concord/discord, absorption/refusal,
familiarity/strangeness. The curator Yong-soon Min and the cultural
anthropologist Soo-young Chin will supervise the educational part of the
project. The film director Paul Yi will curate the feature and independent
film selection. The exhibition coordinator Ronald Stroude will design the

Composition of the Exhibition

THERE, which will be located in Gallery 5 of the Biennale Hall, will have
two main axes: history and education, and art culture. The history and
education approach will be composed of 1) a chronicle of projected images
and text of the Korean diaspora from the past to the present; 2) five-minute
filmed interviews of artists who will be participating in a survey of the
five cities; 3) an entertaining full-length film and visual educational
program, involving international scholars and artists, on approaches to the
Korean diaspora and the division of the two Koreas. The art section will
display artworks by Korean artists who were born or are living in one of the
aforementioned five cities. In the lounge around the gallery, visitors will
be invited to create art themselves so that they can get a real feel for

Participating Artists

The curators have made an initial selection of fourteen artists: nine
Americans, two Brazilians, three Chinese, one Japanese, and one Korean. They
will choose around six more artists from throughout Asia, in November. Byung
Ok Koh(Korea?LA), Lina Kim(Sao Paulo), Eun Kyu Ryu(Seoul?Yanji), Jennifer
Moon(LA), Joseph Park(Ottawa?Seattle), Sang Won Sung(Korea?Sao Paulo),
Yoshiko Shimada/Hwangbo Kangja/Miline Women Group(Tokyo, Osaka), Jin
Lee(Chicago), Wonju Lim(Gwangju?LA), Y. David Chung(Bonn?Washington), Seong
Chun(Korea?New York), Susan Choi(Seoul?LA), David Korty(LA), Joo-young

Project 3

On May 18, 1980, Gwangju citizens rose up against the military dictatorship
and fought for democracy in Korea. What is known today as the "May 18
Gwangju Citizens for Democracy Movement" has become an inspiration for other
oppressed Asian peoples, and the Sangmudae Stockade, in Gwangju, where
citizens were confined and tortured at the time, has become a symbol of the
movement. The stockade itself, however, has been neglected, and today it
presents a sorry sight beside the new construction development around it. By
organizing artistic experiments that go beyond narrow historical
interpretations, project3 will try to revive this symbol and reinterpret its
place in politics, society and cultural consciousness.

Composition of the Exhibition

Project3 participants will invest the Sangmudae Stockade. Documentation on
the May 18 movement will be displayed in a gallery. In an effort to bring
art to the people, there will be seminars and educational workshops
featuring videos. Sites on the former military base - courtroom, stockade,
military police barracks, cafeteria, watchtower, headquarters office, store,
kitchen - will display art whose theme will be the political oppression of
the human spirit and senses. The surrounding grounds will host other
artworks and a reception center. Details on space design and participating
artists have yet to be finalized. Redesign of spaces is at the planning
stage. Selection of artists is imminent.

Project 4  Site-off-Sight

About ten kilometers of railroad tracks crossing the eastern semicircular
region of Gwangju were recently phrased out because of its heavy train
traffic crossing over twenty city intersections, its frequent train
accidents and its disturbing noise for neighboring residents. Site-off-Sight
will be a public art experiment offering a derelict stretch of railroad a
new intersection with the desires and concerns of artists, citizens and even
bureaucrats. Site-off-Sight's theme is "inherited land," and will be
composed of small works dealing with: recycling of sites, facilities and
waste; land art using vegetable gardens around the railway; an open-air
museum connecting the past to the present; architectural landscape composed
of simple temporary structures; connections among neighboring regions
formerly connected by the railway; a nomadic shelter, basis of a nomadic
lifestyle; an open-air classroom for neighborhood students and residents
around the railway; a revival of urban ecosystems; a promenade and a sports
program for the public; and a vision of future urban life. Even after the
biennale closes its doors, Site-off-Sight will continue to give new life to
sites where the railway crosses the city.

Composition of the Exhibition

Site-off-Sight will cover 10.8 km of railroad, with two special artistic
projects, one by artists, including public art by architects, land artists,
painters, and landscape artists, the other by architecture students from
universities in Gwangju and Seoul, including a data display on original ways
of rebuilding old railway sites, an exhibition on the history of the
Gwangju-Yosu Railway, a photo exhibition and a painting exhibition.

Participating Artists

Because this is a public art project of field works, the organizers will
select artists to survey the sites and submit first drafts of their projects
for consideration. Curators and staff of the Gwangju Biennale will examine
them and then choose participants from among the most promising projects.
The following are preselected artists.

Architects: Young-joon Kim, Jong-kyu Kim, Hye-lim Seo, min i, Jong-ho Yi,
Chang Young Ho(China).

Land and landscape artists: A. H. Geuze(Netherlands), Alejandro Zaere
Polo(UK),Gilles Clemant(France),Jacques Simon(France), Olga Tarraso(Spain)

Artists: Sung-soon Kong, Ki-chul Kim, Yong-ik Kim, Heung-rok Doh, Sang-ho
Park, Jung-hwan Park, Kyu-chul Ahn, Yong-baek Lee, Joong-keun Lee, Cheng
Seon Hooi, Hyun Jung, Jung-hwa Choi, Soon-myung Hong.

Whereas the basic theme and structures of the biennale have been determined,
details of the decisions made in the above proceedings are subject to
change, because the organizers would like to remain open to suggestions from
curators, artists, and interested parties, inside and outside the structures
of the Gwangju Biennale 2002. As one participant in the meetings so aptly
stated: "In the long run, the Gwangju Biennale's rupture from the
traditional biennale structure may serve as a precedent. We need to create a
more creative bureaucracy, where all of us working on the team initiate
creative thinking. The Asia-Pacific region can indeed recreate biennales and
other events using new structures. The Gwangju Biennale should be a
laboratory for people to think about the future."


Jong Eun Lee
Coordinator of the Gwangju Biennale 2002
Tel: +82-(0)62-515-4652  Fax: +82-(0)62-515-4657
Mobile: +82-(0)16-399-2722

GWANGJU BIENNALE 2002(Mar 29~Jun 29)
San 149-2, Yongbong-dong, Buk-gu, Gwangju 500-070, Korea

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