Lim, Young Bang(Aesthetics & Fine Arts) - The Movement in Harmony with Expressed Solid Forms - 1994 > CRITIQUES

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Lim, Young Bang(Aesthetics & Fine Arts) - The Movement in Harmony with…

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The Movement in Harmony with Expressed Solid Forms
Lim, Young Bang(Aesthetics Fine Arts)
1. As some plastic characteristics which can be, in the first place, found out in the works of the artist, Lim, Dong-Lak, that are composed of solid forms and the constructive structure of being horizontal and perpendicular, the stability of a proper-scale mass which gives no visual burden as well as the visual tension stirred up by the felt movement in such stable forms can be exampled.
His works have considerable weight as much as making someone feel the monumentality which can be only found in a symbol of human civilization-Stonehenge. However, such feeling of weight approaches us as a familiar one not in the overpowering atmosphere felt by a large scale stone. Such affinity that can be observed in his work seems to come from his own peculiar vision by which he intended to express the human history and civilization which are contained in the stone, not regarding the stone as only a physical material, Even though the remains of megalithic culture as the evidence of human effort given to measuring the infinity of time remind us the incantatory thinking-method of man who had worshipped the sun in the prehistoric age, it is noteworthy that the works of Lim, Dong-Lak interpret that by new plastic language.
 The Stabilized form of his works which were created by some stone pillars supported by a base of 'a disk' remind us, sometime, a look of a sundial whose shadow is casted to an another direction as time passes or a look of a shrine which might be constructed in an era of the past. In other expression about his works, even though he uses, generally, a traditional material of sculpture-'stone', architectural formation can be even considered through joining together many stones, not creating an artistic form with a mass of 'stone'. Therefore, his works which remind us a sundial or a relic of megalithic culture or a shrine show formal completeness, once. Moreover, by his combining time into th three-dimensional solid body, thereby having considered that works can be felt differently as time passes, he has given a special feature to his works which is a particular element of his work. Also since his works, not for the forms which are internally condensed that can be found out in sculptures in general, but for the exposure to the external world, show a nature oriented to environmental sculpture in a different context, which differs from the sculpture for indoor exhibition.
 As he himself clarified, his intention to express through his works in contents can be both human scientific spirit and humanism. That is, his works which are composed of well organized forms are the very expression of his own concern-results from scientific efforts to overcome nature and then utilize it for human life. However, he does not consider nature as objects which should be applied for human life or should be overcome, and instead intends just to realized the beauty of the order and harmony included in through his work. The combination of such opposing elements as outstanding horizontality and perpendicularity, stability and movement, prominence and depression, etc. is the very principle of natural generation and what reminds us about the principles which can be found out in the world of nature of endless movement and change. Such opposing elements in nature coexist not in the form of mutual confrontation but under th principles of harmony and balance. Therefore, it is noteworthy that his works whose objects are mostly a symbol of nature, the mountain() describe the outward form of the mountain and accord with the principles of harmony and order dwelled in it. The ascending straight lines with acute angles require no perpendicular expansion. The soft and natural curves covering the straight lines remind us about the principle of nature that is worn away by the continuity of time, thereby ultimately harmonizing which other objects. In particular, the base of a disk spreaded horizontally itself is a form that is well matching with the harmony of surrounding environments with which environmental sculpture should be furnished, and in the meantime it is considered that it agrees with our view of nature oriented to not confrontation but coexistence.
2.  As viewed so far, the movement felt from the stone pillars ascending perpendicularly means growth, and the base of them, the round ground, implicates the deeply hidden root of the basis of human civilization, tradition, and history. For example let's note his work with a seemingly literary title <Point-Hot Sun>. The four stone pillars, since they signify the four directions-east, west, south, and north, indicate the human perspective as a subject who grasps the directions, distance, and the space of universe felt by man who stand erect. Traditionally Oriental people including Koreans have observed the Yin-Yang Elements or the order of universe through four directions. The base which supports his works signifies the ground of earth where people set foot. When the Western artists intended to depict the celestial body by means of a cupola, the center of universe he understood might be the ground where they set foot. As locating an absolutely perfect form of a kind of 'egg' like a kernel, the artist, Lim, Dong-Lak, composes his work so that his sculptural structure can be assembled toward such a form of 'egg' as if all the objects are gathered toward a starting point to grasp objects and the world, i. e. a small mark of a part of the perspective of painting. Particularly, he, as creating such a form of a globe makes the viewer of it feel as if the base and pillars hold an egg.
 Since the very complex form of his works in an aspect, however, is not 'chattering' to which the plastic language of orthodox sculpture is well accorded, it gives no psychological burden. The reason why his works are felt comparatively familiar in our perspective is, in part, that his pursuing method follows 'the tradition of sculptural expression'. In other words, his works are never strange in his skill of management of 'stone' or method of processing it into sculpture or the plastic order formed on such a basis. In this regard, even the combination of different materials in his work seems to be a proper choice bringing his intention into relief rather than being felt strange or unreadable.
 His peculiar senses and vision of nature and the world reveals not only in such stone works but also in all the other works of him as they are. The mountains that he depict by stone are not one that upheaves smoothly in a form of a parabola but one that is expressed in a form as if a part of it has been cut off by a knife by means of straight lines. However in it, parallel lines indicating hills and valleys are piled up one on another as if they are parabolas, and also it makes understood in what method his intention to shape the image of mountains by making complex geographical features of a mountain plane has been achieved. In other words, he is not intending to depict mountains as a physically existing object, but intending to reveal their essential structure. Therefore, the outward form of mountains in his work is furnished with minimal forms through anyone can recognize it as a mountain or mountains. That is, the basic frame of a mountain and such structure are the starting points of his works.
Such outstanding expressional methods in his work are also a feature even found in his early works. And his concern is not to be satisfied as a sculpture laying on the ultimate point of consequence, a sitting place of a complete work, but to develop it into an outdoor sculpture oriented to the open space felt which require harmony with environments as well as finally communication with the public.
 In case of outdoor sculpture, it premises a regular size for the harmony with surrounding environments, choice of proper materials to endure the severe change of natural environment, and mostly importantly the firm understanding of the features and conditions of the place where works set. In this regard, since his works are equipped with several prerequisites of outdoor sculpture, it is certain they signify much in the aspect of the extension of a sculptural area. In particular since the contents of his intention of expression are nature which are not strange to us, it can be said that the persuasion of his works is significant. Moreover with his pursuing plastic language being familiar with us, it facilitates our approach to his works.
 In the meantime, however, it is noteworthy that the familiarity with such materials, techniques, and expressional method can be an obstacle to hide the solid nature of the contents of a work and the vivid relief of a subject. Being indulged in the beauty of forms and technical completeness in a mistake, it is very easy to lose the artistic power of sculpture. As other sculptors, the artist, Lim, Dong-Lak, also is not likely to be completely free from such a limit. Even though his works that are composed of lucid forms and balanced structure show aesthetic nature as an object, a point is wished to be indicated that when being focussedly cling to it, the theme of a work can be 'evaporated into air'.


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