Past Exhibitions

Infinitely

Shir Meller-Yamaguchi

Infinitely: Hyon-Jin Park
Curator: Shir Meller-Yamaguchi
10/2009 – 12/2009
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In this moment there is nothing which comes to be. In this moment there is
nothing which ceases to be. Thus there is no birth-and-death to be brought to
an end. Wherefore the absolute tranquility is this present moment. Though it is at this
moment, there is no limit to this moment, and herein is eternal delight.
Hui-Neng*
Infinitely

In the exhibition “Infinitely”, Korean artist Hyon-Jin Park sums up eight years of work in Israel. During this period, Park, who holds an MA in traditional and modern ink painting from Korea, studied in the MFA Program at the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design on a grant from the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs as part of a cultural exchange program.

Infinitely

Observation of Park’s works is tantamount to observation of the endless flow of a river. The current exhibition offers a meditative experience vis-à-vis the gradually changing color fields. The eye requires time to discover the countless hues between black and white; the gaze sinks into the depth of the dark shades, resurfacing into the light flickering between them. The light cannot exist without the darkness, and they intermingle into a single texture. In this painting there is no preference of one state over another, only recognition of the cyclicality, which has neither beginning nor end.

Infinitely

Every work consists of a series of ink drawings on rice paper** which continue and complement one another. A gaze seeking to separate image from background will find nothing to which to cling. One must let go of the need for fixed definitions of reality in order to experience the indistinctiveness and the constant variability inherent in her work.

Infinitely

Park opts for two figures articulating infinite action: the cyclical or spiral shape which moves around a focal point, and the line extending forever, and no-one knows where and when it will end. The work consists of four parts centered on horizontal lines at a uniform rhythm. Delicate brush strokes generate variations which are virtually imperceptible within each part, yet discernible in their joints. The painting in ink preserves the water’s flow and expansion.
Park’s choice of water as a theme as well as a medium stems from water’s miraculous ability to connect and flow inseparably, to make life possible to all creatures indiscriminately and with great generosity. Park likens the water element to maternal love, which is underlain by boundless endowment and expanding circles of containment, accompanying the children even when they grow up and go their own way.
Park admits that she was deeply influenced by the eco-Feminist perception. According to this approach, man’s sense of superiority over and differentiation from nature leads to acts of destruction and pollution of the environment. In the video piece Nirvana taken at the Dead Sea, Park spread sheets of paper over the water, repeatedly inscribing the word “mother” in ink as a type of mantra which awakens the life force inherent in the Dead Sea. Park’s grandmother in Korea had a Buddhist temple. From there she remembers the Nirvana rituals in which long sheets of fabric are hoisted from the temple’s roof like prayers in the wind. Hyon-Jin’s prayer calls for connection between people, striving for unity between man and nature.

Shir Meller-Yamaguchi
Exhibition Curator

* Hui-Neng quoted in A. Watts, The Way of Zen (New York: Pantheon Books, 1957), p. 220.
** The term “rice paper” is a common error. It is, in fact, made from paper mulberry bark.