Beyond Objects

March 4 – March 8, 2020
Curator: Cindy Qian
Artists: Mika Sarina Lee, Hannah Park  

Beyond Objects

 The exhibition explores the presentation and representation of ordinary things that usually do not get a second look. Mika Sarina Lee and Hannah Park manipulate common materials usually used in interiors and construction sites, and combine them with conventional artistic media in their works. Incorporating materials such as glass, paper, stone, bolts, hooks, nails, furniture fragments, and more, the artists deconstruct found objects and endow them with new meanings through the manipulation of their materiality and placement.  

Inspired by Marcel Duchamp’s use of glass and Constantin Brancusi’s sculptures, Lee combines fiction and reality into her intuitive drawings. Lee’s pen on paper drawing is her point of departure, functioning as parts of her collage behind glass or as the basis for her multimedia objects. Often inspired by little things she finds in curious settings or places, Lee cherishes the unique quality of found objects and places them in her work in such a way that the objects are not overshadowed. In one of her latest works, she uses laser to incise fine lines onto a piece of found limestone, combining the thin contours in her drawings with ready-made objects. Interested in disrupting people’s process of seeing, recognizing, and understanding, Lee creates works that are done with precision and delicate details that require close looking.

Also employing a wide range of materials and ready-made objects, Park explores the desire and need for “maintenance.” She describes the process of maintenance as “breaking down or emptying out, building up or filling in,” a sequence of gestures required for both the well-being of the human mind and everyday objects. The laborious process of fixing things is crucial to Park’s work. Her sculptures and installations are often created through intense manual labor of piecing broken things together and adding joints (such as hooks and bolts) to put other parts on the existing objects. Park uses the physical space and ready-made objects as metaphors, linking the human body with the materiality of her found objects. Drawing inspiration from her identity, childhood experience, and woodworking, Park constructs sculptures, installations and time-based media that capture and document the gestures necessary to maintain the wholeness of a found object or one’s mental state.

Installation shot ceramic sculpture with black background.Mika Sarina Lee, A Way to do Things, 2019, Sculpture (ceramic), 3” x 5”

Video still, empty gallery wall with spotlightHannah Park, A Case Without Corpse, 2019, Video, 14min 5sec