I’m very excited I can introduce my next ‘Artist of the Month’, award winning Korean artist living in London, Shan Hur. I see Hur as an sculptor with a unique artistic vision. He uses concrete, wood, fine porcelain, musical instruments, basketball, and other objects, that become part of his structures – pillars, cracks in the walls, broken pillars… His outstanding sculptural installations are mostly temporary works, not in their existence, but in their position. They are moved in the space, and adapted as inseparable part of it, and when the show is over, they are moved out and kept carefully crated for next installation. (Yes, I’m talking a whole pillar being moved, a whole wall uninstalled!) They are partly inspired by neutral spaces we walk by daily, such as building sites, architectural features and places undergoing some form of a transition and partly by Hur’s background and childhood, his sense of belonging and position.
Shan Hur is a little bit of a hero to me. I think it takes a lot of confidence, to install a pillar in the space, where at first sight it looks like it belongs there, standing almost unnoticed. However after further examination of it, it simply transforms the way how we look at art, space and both combined. I admire Hur’s work, because it somehow directly speaks to me in the language that is confident and well established. His works are skilful and impeccably planned, with no space for error.
His work is mysterious and playful. Fragments of fairy-tales, archeology and history are strongly resonating when studying his pieces, but first you must find them. It doesn’t take long before you notice, something is not quite right. Alarmingly a pillar you are standing next to turns in to art. Is it perhaps broken? You may ask, but soon realizing, that a beautiful porcelain vase is set in the pillar! How is that possible?! More signs of action is on the floor, in a form of some rubble. Are these remaining pieces left there on purpose, while the creator had been trying to excavate this treasure vase out of the pillar? Is he coming back? It makes you question a lot of things, especially the process of how these works are made. (Don’t be tempted to take a crumble of the concrete on the floor back home, it is part of the work!) I was referencing an artwork called ‘Broken Pillar’ 2012, Gazelli Art House exhibition ‘Bodhi’ that closes April 19, 2012 in Dover Street, London, where I discovered Hur’s art.
I found out many interesting things about his artistic vision, background to his creative soul and he also answered some questions about production of his pieces, while talking to me at No Format space, during exhibition The Function of the Oblique – Part 1, in South East London. If you are curious, you can listen to find out much more about his inspirations in my live introduction of Hur and his work on Thursday, 19th April at 12.10pm on Colourful Radio. My monthly slot features as a part of Rosemary Laryea‘s “Art and Culture Show”. If you miss it, don’t worry, you can listen to it again here (added below). I’m certainly looking forward to it! Thanks for reading and listening, and I’ll be back next month with another ‘Silvia Krupinska’s Artists of the Month’!
To find out more about the artist, visit his website for details of awards, exhibitions and his artist statement. Full page of images of his works are available to look at as well. http://www.shanhur.com/