Wilkinson Gallery is pleased to present its third solo exhibition with Sung Hwan Kim.
‘Pages from Ki-da Rilke’ is an expansion of a book project that Sung Hwan Kim produced as part of his 2011 exhibition at Kunsthalle Basel. The title of the book – ‘Ki-da Rilke’ – is a transliteration of the phrase ‘I will wait’ into Korean, from which Kim drew a pertinent association with the Prague-born, German-speaking poet Rainer Maria Rilke. In the book, Kim transcribed a selection of German poems by Rilke, and then responded to them through a process of drawing. The drawings currently on display in ‘Pages from Ki-da Rilke’, ‘Ki-da Rilke’ the book, and Kim’s video ‘Washing Brain and Corn’ (currently on view in The Tanks at Tate Modern), all function as an interrelated body of work. The book in particular offers a different sense of duration to the exhibition, combining the personal space of a book with the open public space of the installation.
The works in this exhibition mimic the formal layout of the book; the simple wooden framework built in response to the architecture of the gallery reflects the structure of the book, the soft pink inserts in the book are replicated in rigid Perspex, and more generally, Kim lends a form to Rilke’s words. Working with commercial materials such as parchment paper, acetate sheets and Perspex, images of human profiles are repeatedly drawn as a method of training akin to a person learning how to write letters of the alphabet.
In the work ‘Architectural Plan For From the Commanding Heights…’ we see Kim’s installation sketch for The Tanks at Tate Modern with a more recent image drawn over, and under. Kim describes the texts – which accompany both the book and the prints on Perspex – as ‘didactics’ which are, to use architectural analogies, both a ‘way in’ to his drawings, and an extension of his thought process behind them.
Sung Hwan Kim (b. 1975, Seoul, Korea) lives and works in New York. He worked in the Netherlands for four years, where he served as a fellow at the Rijksakademie van Beeldende Kunsten (2004-5). Kim’s practice has grown to include video, performance, drawing and installation – the artist’s videos are invariably rooted in his performances, which use simple materials and story-telling techniques to conjure fantastic worlds and fairytale-like stories. In 2012, Sung Hwan Kim was awarded the first major commission for The Tanks at Tate Modern, and his work is currently on view at Tate until 28 October 2012. He has an upcoming solo exhibition at Artsonje Centre, Seoul, Korea (2014). Other solo exhibitions include Kunsthalle Basel, Switzerland (2011), Queens Museum of Art, New York (2011), Haus der Kunst, Munich (2010), Witte de With - Centre for Contemporary Art, Rotterdam, The Netherlands (2008). Performances include ‘One From in the Room’ at the New Museum, New York (2010).