Sun, Jan 27, 2013 - Page 12 News List

Art: Vessels of life

By Noah Buchan  /  Staff reporter

Photo courtesy of Art Issue Projects

Over the past seven years, South Korean painter Choi Young Wook has consistently adopted the moon jar — a porcelain vessel in use during Korea’s late Joseon dynasty (1392-1910) — as the principal subject of his paintings, of which 22 are currently on display in Karma (緣). Choi perceives in the moon jar a pastoral aesthetic of common people. Weathering the course of history, caressed by human hands, bathed by water and rubbed by cloth for many years, the surface of these white porcelain jars change, acquiring scratches, and the “whiteness” of its exterior takes on a completely different quality. Permeated with the scars of life, the cracked glaze on the exterior of the moon jar often increases in the complexity of its fractured patterns, yielding an intermingling of the new with the old. Choi extends the moon jar’s many minute changes wrought by time to signify the universal life memories that humanity collectively shares. The cracked patterns of the glaze thus becomes a symbol of the mutual connections of fate, which he encompasses under the word karma. Here, metaphorically transformed by the artist, the white moon jars become vessels of life.

■ Art Issue Projects (藝術計劃), 32, Ln 407, Tiding Blvd Sec 2, Taipei City (台北市堤頂大道二段407巷32號), tel: (02) 2659-7737. Open daily from 11am to 6pm. Closed Mondays

■ Until Feb. 3

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