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DAUN JEONG

 

The most important and frequently used media in my work is fabric. I’m interested in visual aspects that come from the act of seeing. Fabric has been chosen as the medium not to make a narrative or conceptualize personal life but to express my artistic interest. Fabric Drawing is literally a painting that is drawn with fabric. Visual effects are minimized and a pure expression of fabric constitutes the artwork. In other words, I make paintings by using texture, color, and patterns of fabric, seeking new possibilities of visual effects in the painting genre.

In art history, minimalism was started in the 1960s by artists such as Donald Judd (1928-1994) and Robert Morris (1931-). They minimized artistic techniques and intervention, removing unnecessary elements and leaving only essential parts, in visual arts such as sculpture and painting. Their works are patterned, symmetrical, and repetitive. They are not rhetorical but abstract and quite physical.1 The visual characteristics of minimalist arts such as simplicity, repetitiveness, or materiality, could be related to my artworks.

I find four main factors in the process of my art practice.

First, they give a tactile experience to viewers when they are just looking at the paintings. For example, the work Line of Dimension is composed of different textures of mono-colored fabrics, striped fabric, or colored stripes. By looking at the fabrics in the work that are tight, loose, patterned, or wrinkled, viewers could have a tactile experience of them. The texture or property of the material makes viewers feel like they’re touching it and this creates new forms of tactile sensation.

The second factor is space. Alongside using textures of fabric, I create 3-dimensional spaces in my artworks by dividing a flat screen, layering fabrics, and expressing the visual elements. When the fabrics are overlapping, there are small gaps between them and I emphasize the gap by using different sizes of planes and stripes, making optical illusions of real spaces or spaces that do not exist. The spaces have aesthetic potential and bear new possibilities of artistic imagination. By doing that, the paintings overcome their flatness and become three dimensional.

My work that is characterized by the three dimensional space can be related to the work of Italian artist Lucio Fontana (1899-1958). In his work Specialism, one of his famous Buchi series, the slit that is opened horizontally doesn’t have any function or decorative effect. Rather, it is a pictorial space. By making a slit on a mono-colored canvas, he metaphorically created a new visual perspective with the creation of space.

The third factor of my work is the stripe pattern. I use a lot of stripe-patterned fabric. By translating the original repetitive stripe into a different pattern using my own technique, I try to make new images and visual effects. As I put a different amount of pressure on the fabric, the length, width, and thickness of the stripe gets varied. By expanding and distorting the fabric, I pursue different images, study the relationship between straight lines and curves, and express how they interact with space.

The last factor is color. Color is an important element in the composition of my works. The harmony of color and repetitive stripes changes painterly space into dynamic space that can be visually divided. Also, the dynamic and repetitive stripes and their color composition are elements that connect 2D and 3D space in the frame. Thus, the color and tactility of the material play an important role in connecting discrepancies between each distinguished fabric and color.

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