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My Garden

Yoo Sun-tai

Installation View of ‘My Garden’ at Duru artspace

Yoo Sun tai’s paintings expose the fact that the images are not reality, but illusions in a frame. The landscapes he has painted are isolated layer after layer in multiple frames. What painting provided us was the visual illusion transcending the flat physical space. The rectangular frame we commonly think of when we hear the word painting is a certain conceptual frame, serving as a background for such representation. The space in that frame is treated differently from the physical space we exist in.

유선태, 예술과 예술 사이, 오브제에 아크릴, 66.5×33.5×2.5cm, 2024

For a long time, some of the high praise for art in the West has referred to “art competing with nature,” or “art that has reached the realm of nature.” But in order to mimic nature, art has had to lie —pretending to be natural while being artificial, pretending not to be a painting while being a painting. This is a sort of trick. In 17th-century still life painting made in the Netherlands, the chessboard is an allegorical object suggesting that accident or trickery will intervene in life. The floor as part of the interior in Yoo’s paintings also consists of a chess board, with intersecting squares of black and white. The hero standing on it—the artist on his bike—plays the game, as he enjoys the trick called art and the contingencies intervening in life.

유선태, 꿈꾸는 전화기, 오브제에 아크릴, 30.5x87cm, 2024

In the paintings of Yoo, however, the observer and ego—the artist—is present. He looks like a time traveler on a bicycle, journeying in a space where objects of the memory float around. His presence,in a stationary position, tells us the present. And the moment he steps on the bicycle pedals, a new space and future will unfold before him.

Duru artspace
5, Jahamun-ro 45-gil, Jongno-gu, Seoul, South Korea
02 720 0345