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Audain Gallery, Vancouver
March 24 – April 2, 2016
Audain Visual Artist in Residence at the School for the Contemporary Arts, Simon Fraser University
Simon Fraser University’s School for the Contemporary Arts (SCA) is pleased to welcome Yong Soon Min as the SCA’s 2016 spring Audain Visual Artist in Residence. In the Audain Gallery, Yong Soon Min’s video work focusing on North Korea, Bungabsubnida and On the Road: Northern Exposure, will be exhibited alongside collaboratively produced projects and performances by the second and third year undergraduates in the Visual Art Program.
As a variation of our annual third year undergraduate exhibition, the Audain Gallery will function as a hybrid pedagogical space to explore the formal, conceptual and political aspects of monuments, counter-monuments and the notion of alternative archives. Public events and informal discussions on questions concerning war, ideology, colonialism, multiculturalism and transnationalism-which Yong Soon Min has addressed over her long career-are also an integral part of this project.
The second and third year students will construct and install a (counter) monument loosely based on the Robo-Lenin from Magnitorsk (1931), which was destroyed in 1932, yet remains documented in a photograph for Life Magazine by Margaret Bourke-White. A large pedestal base related to the reclining horizontal monument will serve as a platform for readings and performances by the students. In addition, the students will make sculptural spheres inspired by Yong Soon Min’s work. Framed by discussions concerning the hierarchies by which materials get preserved and monumentalized, students will work with texts and images that have inspired and transformed their habitual sense of the world and place these into the work as personal archives. Other collectively made large-scale spheres will be covered with visual and textual information referring to the current conditions of our late capitalist society. What can we learn from the extremes of failed utopian visions as a way forward, without cynicism? This central question anchors the disparate elements.
Yong Soon Min is an artist based in Los Angeles. She was born near Seoul in 1953, the year the Korean War ended in Armistice. Min immigrated with her mother and brother to the U.S. in 1960 to join their father and grew up in Monterey, CA. She received her MFA degree from UC Berkeley in 1979 and a postdoc at the Whitney Museum’s Independent Study Program in 1981. After three years as a visiting faculty at Ohio University, she lived in New York City for nine years before relocating to Los Angeles where she has been teaching at UC Irvine for over twenty years and is now Professor Emeritus.
Min’s art practice, inclusive of curatorial projects, engages interdisciplinary sources and processes in the examination of issues of representation and cultural identities and the intersection of history and memory. Among her numerous grants and awards, Min received a Fulbright Senior Research Grant, COLA Individual Artist Fellowship from the City of Los Angeles Cultural Affairs Department, Korea Foundation Grant, Anonymous Was a Woman Award and NEA Visual Artist Award in New Genre. She has exhibited nationally and internationally and has curated numerous exhibitions.