Artist Profile: Byungseo Yoo

by Jae in Jung

Artist Byungseo Yoo and curator, Sojin Kim by Yoo's Disposable Cinema (2014)

Artist Byungseo Yoo and curator, Sojin Kim by Yoo’s Disposable Cinema (2014)

Korea-based artist Byungseo Yoo has recently made his journey to Vancouver for his first exhibition in Canada. His works are currently being exhibited in Vancouver at Public Storage. Considering the nature of the space—a repository for forgotten objects—one may think of it as an unlikely place to display an artwork. That said, it is a suitable place for Yoo’s installation Disposable Cinema (2014), which touches on the theme of ephemerality and chance. In this work, Yoo has created a cine projector out of disposable materials such as plastic bottles, styrofoam, paper cups, and wooden boxes.

Public Storage, Vancouver

Public Storage, Vancouver

The artist’s core interest in contemporary art started when he became involved in the art collective Micro/Weiv at Korea National University of Arts. After organizing an art collective with artist Seok-hyun Han, he exhibited nationally at Seoul Museum of Art, SeMA Nanji (Seoul), and National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (Changdong).

Yoo’s participation in Korea’s well-known controversial artists’ survival reality-TV show, Art Star Korea, catapulted him to celebrity status in Korea’s contemporary art scene. His eccentric personality is one of the many factors that draw people’s attention.

Byungseo Yoo

Byungseo Yoo

In my email conversation with Yoo, he said, “The reason why I work in the context of contemporary art is because it is the most progressive genre in the art field. It became most appealing to me with the idea that ‘not doing art can even be considered art’ in the contemporary art world. Just like many artists who gave me inspiration, I also hope my work will inspire people and provoke social change.”

Byungseo Yoo, Disposable Cinema (2014)

Byungseo Yoo, Disposable Cinema (2014)

Although Yoo is now a well-known contemporary artist in Korea, his concentration in university was theory in visual arts. After realizing that his story can only be told through his projects, he changed direction and became more of an artist than a theorist. I believe this is what really made him distinctive and stand out among other great artists, and to become one of the finalists in Art Star Korea.

Disposable Cinema

November 30 – December 30, 2014
Public Storage (by appointment only. Contact: sojinkim1989@gmail.com)
Curated by Sojin Kim

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