ArtSonje Performance: Yanghee Lee, Dusk
2018. 8. 11. 12:00 – 20:00
Art Sonje Center 2 -3F
ArtSonje Performance: Yanghee Lee, Dusk
Dusk is an attempt to recall the rare instances of awakening that we encounter in life and share them in a perceptible way. It is an experiment in re-mediating those specific moments through the body, translating them into different artistic forms such as music, video, installation, and design in order to construct them into an integrated choreographic whole.
The performance is to take place on Saturday, August 11, in Art Sonje Center’s second-floor gallery and last for a total of eight hours, beginning at noon and continuing until after the sun has completely set at 8 p.m. It is a combination of the choreographer’s own movements, the sounds of sound artist Hankil Ryu, and light conversion by lighting designer Myung-jun Noh. Body, sound, and light are each assigned their own action units according to a jo-ha-kyū structure, with one scene presented at a time from 100 modules taken from the sum of all possibilities. The jo-ha-kyū rhythm structure comes from the Japanese musical drama form of Noh, where jo represents the initiation or origin of action, ha its destruction or development, and kyū the tempo or climax. It is a structure that signifies the pattern of rhythmic physical movement that begins slowly and increasingly accelerates toward a climax – but it does not necessarily denote a linear progression from “beginning” to “middle” and “end.” The order of individual stages may be reversed, and each individual unit has countless possible progressions and microscopic rhythms. While this performance does refer to the jo-ha-kyū principle, it establishes various situations and relationships in which energy may be amplified or dissipated through different combinations of body, sound, and light. Free to move about during the performance, audience members may encounter only specific moments, or they may witness all of the different variations from start to finish, experiencing the moments when these structures vary – or sometimes scatter – as the body becomes exhausted over the course of time.
The work traces its origins to an experience of personal loss borne by the choreographer ten years ago. After the death of someone close, the artist went through a period of confusion as she considered their relationship. She would go every day to walk by the river; one day at sunset, she experienced a moment where she seemed drawn into a deep bluish time and space. An experience of welcome – as though standing alone in an unknown time and space – became inscribed in her body and memory, as did a profound awareness of herself within that time and space. For the past decade, the artist has used that moment as an index to develop works of text, photography, and performance on the theme “dusk.” But Dusk does not exist to share her personal experience of transcendence or process of realization. It signifies a perception of moments of realization through the relationship between herself and the time and space outside the body. Of the many elements that constitute that relationship between the self and external time and space, the artist has selected the two that has the most powerful impact on her – the tumult and trembling of external space and time and the perception of “negative space” surrounding the subject – and constructed the negative space through performance, page, and screen.
Dusk was first performed in 2011 as a New York Live Arts showcase. Comprising storytelling, dance, and song, it is presented on video in the Art Sonje Center’s third-floor exhibition space. While it draws upon a record of past work, it also affords a unique visual experience to viewers with a structure in which partial scenes from that record are screened at random. The principle and characteristics underpinning the viewing of the performance – with each person witnessing his or her own scenes at their own times – results in a space that is based in a visual record, yet signifies a time and space uniquely for that individual. It is the time and space of Dusk.
The last chapter of Dusk takes place on the printed page. Using texts she has collected for the past decade in a form of epigram, the artist has collaborated with designer Kyeong-soo Lee to create a “book as performance” and “performance as book.” An attempt to experiment with the aspects and limitations of the performing arts within the space of the page, it is a performance in which each turning of the page is a scene transition and the occurrence of movement. Signifying a performance that can be experienced by each viewer in her own chosen setting, the book is mailed to viewers after they attend the performance.
As a choreographer who has studied traditional Korean dance, Yanghee Lee began her own choreographic work by questioning the concept of “choreography” as a weak area within traditional dance forms. As it broadens its horizons from here, her work, Dusk, experiments with the meaning and possibilities of choreography, expanding its subjects and scope beyond movement to include all of the component parts surrounding her own perception – letters, images, spaces, the theater, and even the viewer and nature.
Haeju Kim (Deputy Director, Art Sonje Center)
Myung-jun Noh (light), Hankil Ryu (sound), Yanghee Lee (movement), Ok Ju
Kyeong-soo Lee, Yanghee Lee
Jae Young Ahn
Jong Soung Kim
Jiyoung Jung, Hyo Gyoung Jeon
Art Sonje Center
C!here space sharing movement, C2 Artechnolozy, CollagE, Ministry of Culture, nonfictionhome.kr, OUR/VODKA, Pine Art Label, Secret Base, Seoul Foundation for Arts and Culture, Seoul Metropolitan Government, Sports and Tourism