Nam June Paik Art Center to host two online talks this week in memory of the artist
In commemoration of the 15th anniversary of the death of artist Nam June Paik (1932-2006), which falls on Friday, the Nam June Paik (NJP) Art Center will hold two special online talks this week, which look back on the art and life of Paik, often dubbed “the father of video art,” in the new context of the present digital environment.
Paik is regarded as a visionary who foresaw the era of the Internet and social media while keeping a generally optimistic view about global communications. His vision will help “find new breakthroughs with art and technology... in this unprecedented era” of Covid-19, said Kim Seong-eun, head of NJP Art Center — a municipal museum of Gyeonggi dedicated to Paik that's located in Yongin City.
The first talk, which will take place on 2 p.m. Tuesday on the Zoom video-conferencing platform, features visual artist and electroacoustic music composer Yunchul Kim. He is participating in the ongoing exhibition “Reality Errors” at the NJP Art Center with two works “Triaxial Pillars II” and “Argos,” which visualize the movement and energy of material particles.
The second talk will be a conversation about digital culture between Lev Manovich, a world-renowned theorist and author, and NJP Art Center director Kim. The conversation will be livestreamed on the museum’s YouTube channel at 3 p.m. on Friday.
At 11 a.m. on Friday, Bongeun Temple in southern Seoul, which houses Paik's urn, will host a memorial ceremony that will also be livestreamed on the Buddhist temple's YouTube channel.
Meanwhile, a solo show of Paik that focuses on his paintings, prints and small TV sculptures, is running through Saturday at Leeahn Gallery in Seochon, west of Gyeongbok Palace, in central Seoul.
The highlight of the exhibits are the lithography series “Evolution, Revolution, Resolution” (1989), derived from a group of TV sculpture series he created in 1989 to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the French Revolution. The prints depict 18th-century politicians, activists and philosophers who were related to the revolution, like Jean-Paul Marat, Maximilien Robespierre, Olympe de Gouges and Denis Diderot, as robots and include Paik’s texts in Chinese characters and hangul (Korean alphabet) that show his brief thoughts about the figures.
BY MOON SO-YOUNG [email@example.com]