Suki Seokyeong Kang
Note—round, mat, square #20-02
Painted steel, Hanji, thread, dyed rush, brass, leather scraps
Approx. 70.5 x 51.25 x 1.5 in (179 x 130 x 4 cm)
Suki Seokyeong Kang’s sculptures comprise assemblages of several discrete units, called Jeong after the rhythmic divisions of Jeongganbo, a music notation system developed during the Korean Joseon dynasty (1392-1897), in which notes written in squares form grid-like arrangements. Like measures in a Jeongganbo score, Kang’s units, whether woven mats or steel cylinders, accumulate into recombinant compositions underscoring their rule-driven, rigorously realized component parts. Yet this modularity is always provisional, a precarious arrival at one of several possibilities rendering cairns to be dismantled and reassembled, pointing towards freedom, individuality, and moments of levity, even tenderness.
Kang’s assemblages manifest in layers: a stack of wooden frames, steel lattices enclosing a woven reed mat (Hwamunseok), or a tight grid of lines and squares set into a porthole, entangled with spidery threads. Kang superimposes the industrial and handmade: handwoven reeds, frayed yarn, and spindly wires compose both semi-anthropomorphs and peep through the slats of steel grids. These hybrid entities bring awareness to not only their own footprint in a given space but also one’s own, drawing attention to the way one holds space and navigates amongst and around other bodies.