Opening reception: October 28, 6 - 8 pm
HB381 is pleased to announce Amalgam, a solo exhibition of recent works by Brooklyn-based multimedia artist Eun-Ha Paek (Korean, b. 1974). In Amalgam, Paek presents a series of ceramic sculptures, accompanied by a video installation. Created by hand as well as through 3D printing technology, the sculptures give physical form to the artist’s inner narratives and personal history, while exploring broader themes of identity and human experience.
Paek’s hybrid approach to ceramics is informed by her background in animation and film. Her attempts to roll increasingly smaller, tighter coils eventually lead her to introduce 3D printing to her practice, enabling detail that would not be possible by hand. The resulting pieces, while finally static, are created through a process that in many ways mimics stop motion animation. Poodle Tower of Babble, modeled after a Dutch tulipière, is an amalgam of the traditional and the experimental, both aesthetically and in its construction. The two lower levels are hand built; these were then 3D scanned and each successive layer was printed in diminishing scale to achieve the tiered effect. The end result is unrecognizable from the original—approaching nothing but a dissolved spire at the very top—suggesting the mutability of memory.
Paek’s work, across media, investigates questions of identity through storytelling. Hints of recognizable references and motifs are present in her figures, but this host of characters is the unique product of a visual language developed to give shape to the artist’s internal dialogue. Poodles, for example, are a recurring theme: “I use poodles to talk about what it can be like to be a woman without referencing the female form. Poodles are the most objectified of dogs. Their coats are cut to be decorative and conform to the owner's desires. I see that as a metaphor for objectification, notions of servitude, and not being taken seriously. Combining traditional forms and imagery with these tongue-in-cheek poodles allows me to allude to these experiences. Using our preconceptions of pottery, I want to combine the familiar and strange to create objects that seem like remnants of a dream, something from the subconscious, rather than overt statements.” Frequently employing the blue and white hues typically associated with Delftware, Paek plays with ideas of assimilation and appropriation, while pieces like Queen of the May #1—a sculptural reinterpretation of an earlier animated music video—deal with conformity and the dynamics of female relationships.
Born in Seoul, Korea in 1974, Eun-Ha Paek currently lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. Paek received a BFA in Film/Animation/Video from the Rhode Island School of Design, where she has also been a guest lecturer. Her work has been exhibited throughout the United States and internationally, and she is the recipient of several awards and grants including the Windgate Scholarship and Rudy Autio Grant from the Archie Bray Foundation. Paek’s animated films have screened in the Guggenheim Museum, Sundance Film Festival, and venues around the world. She has been a guest lecturer at Fashion Institute of Technology, a visiting critic at Maryland Institute College of Art, and she currently serves on the faculty at Parsons School of Design, The New School.