Sojung Jun

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2006-2011   MFA, Media Art, Graduate School of Communication & Art, Yonsei Univ.
2001-2005   BFA, Sculpture, Seoul National Univ.

Solo exhibition(selected)
2011   Six Nights, Seogyo Arts Experimental Center, Seoul, Korea
2010   As you like it, Insa Art Space, Seoul, Korea
           Six Nuits, Centre Européen d'Actions Artistiques Contemporaines, Strasbourg, France
2009   One Man Theater, Gallery Kong, Seoul, Korea
2008   The Finale of a Story, Gallery King, Seoul, Korea

Group Exhibitions(selected)
2010   Media-Archive Project, ARKO Art Center, Seoul, Korea
           EXiS, Experimental Film/Video Festival in Seoul, Arthouse MoMo, FilmForum, Seoul, Korea
           Off And Free International Film Festival, Arthouse MoMo, Seoul, Korea
2009   Cream: International Festival for Arts and Media Yokohama 2009, Yokohama, Japan
           Platform in KIMUSA, KIMUSA, Seoul, Korea
           Jeune Création 2009, CENTQUATRE 104, Paris, France
           The Magic of Photography, HANMI Photograph Museum, Seoul, Korea
2008   Between the Lines, Project space SARUBIA, Seoul, Korea
           Landscape and Imagination, The Unexpected Meeting, Aram Museum, Goyang, Korea
           Up-and- Comers, Art Omi Residency Program_competition, Total Museum, Seoul, Korea
           Product of Space, Seongnam Art Center, Seongnam, Korea

2010-2011   International Artist Studio Program, Changdong, Seoul, Korea
2010   Centre Européen d'Actions Artistiques Contemporaines, Strasbourg, France
2009   Incheon Art Platform, Incheon, Korea
           HIAP Helsinki International Artist in Residence Program, Helsinki, Finland


Virtues of Laboriousness
Kim Yun-kyung
(Independent Curator)

Jun So-jung’s recent video work <The habit of art> has a repetition of 7 episodes, conjuring a sentiment of quite unfamilarness. It seemed to be away from preceding works, in terms of form or content, that would be realized in a wealth of imaginary inventions through narration and videos, theatrical plot and stage, performance and installation, based on stories which her neighbors or acquaintances experience, which may be trivial or meaningful in daily life. It can be seen neither dramatic narratives nor magnificent spectacles, in a train of video clips, including the image of a bird on fire that reveals themselves flaringly from gray ashes, person who stays up only to pour water into a broken jar, glittering beads of glass rolling on a human palm, a pile of matchsticks that towered up but collapsed, vain efforts to scoop out a full moon shining on water, instantly jumping into a fire ring, a walking person on the balance beam with a cup of water-filled glass in hands who steps back and forward on a narrow balance beam. A succession of episodes is replayed in a monotonous but incessant way.

At the moment when someone- of course, it is not uneasy to recognize the person is an artist is suddenly perceived to carry out such simple acts being realized simply from visual perspectives, the videos infinitely replay, uncovering the hierarchy of somewhat intricate stories. Some of those are successfully done in a few rounds of trials, while others result in failure, desperately seeking help from someone. Any such success in those works is actually not so important. Such episodes display boldness and perseverance, sometimes like magic, over the screen, instantly reminded of the images of commoners in a threaded string, such as a dancer in the forest in Finland, an old man on the beach in the North Europe, magic sword performers, women working at gimchi factory, guy who collects antique objects and Suni at a ball in Germany. A sudden clue is cast over why such ethereal episodes as shown earlier captivated Jun So-jung and how their ordinary lives inspired her.

Despite she does not make sweet stories ostentatiously, trace any changes in feeling nor manipulate a mechanism of driving excitement and tension to the extreme, her works have captivating charms. The reason why we cannot divert our eyes from the works which carelessly show a part of someone’s daily routine is not because of splendid attractions but someone’s low-tone voice or storytelling. The storytelling read with imperfect intonation, most of which are quite trivial but private like spectators peep into the secrets of heroes or heroines. Like being spellbound, their empathy with others’ life stories constitute a quintessence of her works. However, their undisclosed experience is preceded by the artist’s own experience and sympathy. She carefully observes the lives of people around her, talks with them, or puts herself in their shoes, keeping some of rapport with them or internalizing their experiences, and immersing herself in fascinating experiences to the greatest extent. In other words, she assimilates herself to the experiences of others, overlapped by internal conflicts that unlimitedly occur within her. As she puts herself in others’ positions, look at the world from others’ viewpoints, her imagination shines more brilliantly interim. As those who she keeps her eyes on, is fascinated by or shares with, albeit coincidence, are people who are eager to do or engrossed in something, she’s likely to have experienced some moments tripping between ordinary life and art. The figures seen from inside the borderline of artistic realm would continue to raise questions to the artist, so she may be compelled to have concern about ‘the role of art’ or ‘art making attitude.’ In the reality where all of which is seen in our eyes is overflowing, what do or can do people named ‘artists’ in daily lives, unlike those who are not artists who drive their assumed ideals to the extreme… An unfamiliar subject of <The habit of art> positions herself in a meaningful relation with her preceding works by generating contexts in effect behind the visible. She shows simply and not exaggeratingly acts that require repetitious drills and exercises such as positioning or instantly jumping into a fire ring weight balancing on a balance beam or freely rolling beads of glass on a human palm along with habitual acts such as piling up matchsticks or drawing and carrying away water. That’s because she is serious to ask herself of questions of what art is and what art does. She started to be concerned with the world which she had seen in the eyes of others or in sympathy with others’ lives through her own body which repeats labors (acts). It means that she started to newly recognize ‘her own’ reality, which has existence within the boundary of art, as much as their reality. It is rather lucky that as planed earlier, her unfinished acts remain to face her.

A person taking cautious steps on a risky boundary and having no other choice is the only one that perceives the existence of both sides. The person’s burden is not to negate the boundary but to remind us of our struggles, desire and frustration from the raison d’etre of human beings on either side. Now, seemingly, Jun So-jung takes a deep breath to make her laborious efforts.