Flat sculptures, some of which look like fragments of ancient buildings and others which look like abstract expressionism paintings on slate and steel sheets, are now hanging at CR Collective, an art space in Mapo district, western Seoul.
They are new abstract works by the London-based Korean artist Meekyoung Shin, who is internationally famous for soap sculptures that depict classic antiques of both the East and West. She re-creates the passage of time reflected in the “artifacts” by letting them be "weathered" by the hands of the audience or by the environment.
These new works, which she created during the pandemic lockdowns in London, are made mainly of Jesmonite, a new material that can generate texture and the feeling of various metals and stones when it is mixed with the metals or stone powders.
“As a sculptor, I was continuously testing new materials and, during the lockdowns, I sought work that I could do without assistants. The result is these new works,” said the artist in CR Collective last month. She added that she was inspired by the abstract qualities of the traces of weathering on the walls of medieval buildings.
She explained she cast the Jesmonite sculpture by using contemporary objects such as rubber rugs and Styrofoam sheets as molds and then put layers of Jesmonite mixed with different materials. Sometimes, she added etching solution in the Jesmonite mixed with metal powder, so that “the artist’s intention and accidental effect by nature could be mixed.”
Culture Desk Chief at the Korea Joongang Daily and Adjunct Professor at Sungshin Women's University's College of Arts.