We live in a vast ocean of material wealth. Objects around us, mobile phones, MP3s, and pens are instantly replaced when brand new products on the market catch our eye. This does not always mean the old stuff goes to the waste basket. They sometimes find their place in a drawer, where people pile up all of objects become unnecessary, each of which has a reason to be saved.
Professor Lee Young-hee (Design) also had several drawers crammed with old goods, but she decided to open them and turn it into art. She gave the objects a new life by sewing them on to a white canvas. “There are many beautiful and new commodities in our world. However, even if you have new ones, you cannot discard old ones since they are already a part of you. You put them inside your drawers. Then, I pulled out those objects I like which were nearly forgotten, put them on the white canvas, and they became something valuable again,” said Lee. With these valuable canvases, Lee held an exhibition, Playing with Miscellany, from March 3 to 14.
In the exhibition room, a hundred pieces of work were attached to the walls. Each small white canvas was the size of a children’s sketchbook. On the canvas, there were innumerable articles from Lee’s drawer: Ear phones, mobile phones, wine opener, a sponge of uncertain usage, a wire, a broken earring and even a pine cone. Putting the objects together, each canvas depicted certain features: ear phones were used as legs of an octopus, the wine opener was the body of a lady, the sponge was the head of a cute bear and a pine cone was a part of an ant. Lee said, “99.9 percent of the materials are from my drawers at the office and home, and the remaining portion is from my students or materials that I picked up from the ground. I found so many valuables and interesting objects when cleaning out my drawers.”
At first glance, it might be difficult to figure out what the canvas tries to show with the various objects adhered to it. However, some special guests actually understood the pieces just by taking a glance. “I could not easily understand what the ear phones were conveying, but my child, right after looking at the picture, shouted ‘mom that is an octopus!’ I guess the pieces are made for children,” said Lee Jeong-hye, who brought her five year-old daughter to the exhibition.
In fact, the artist started to make pieces as teaching materials for children. She said, “The objects on the canvas make children wonder what kind of picture it is, and therefore, awaken their sense of creativity. I hope more children have the chance to see the exhibition and I am willing to donate my work to a children’s museum for that.”
Lee’s art pieces awaken a sense of creativity among both adults and children and tell of the significance of trivial objects around us. They also showed that strong impressions can come not only from masterpieces of famous artists, but also from the mundane. “When working with the pieces, I was surprised by the various shapes, feelings, colors my miscellanies had and through the process whereby they showed new features,” said Lee. However, Lee denied naming her pieces as great art. Lee said, “I just played with my miscellanies in my drawers, and I was happy that I was able to use them rather than throw them away.”
저작권자 © Ewha Voice 무단전재 및 재배포 금지