bitforms gallery is pleased to present new sculpture by Korean artist U-Ram Choe in a second solo exhibition. Realized over the course of a year, this work is rooted in a journey to the American Southwest, where the artist encountered complete darkness for the first time. In this environment Choe observed the Milky Way, unpolluted by the atmospheric haze of artificial light. “I encountered the universe,” says Choe. “Passing moments of absolute being exploded into an immense history of life’s origin.”
“The speed of light fascinates me. Everything that we see in the sky has already happened,” says the artist. Evoking the awe and wonder of nighttime skies, several flickering orbs illuminate the gallery space and surround the viewer with sparkling nebulae.
Bringing the experience of stargazing indoors, the installation conjures galactic scale. At the exhibit’s center is three-tier swirling mass of treelike brass tendrils, resin and light. Forming a representation of the Milky Way, the motorized construction orbits an axis driven by electrical pulses. Programmed by the artist to run in tandem, a collective installation of nearly a dozen sculptures transforms the gallery into a planetarium of Choe’s own personal imagination or universe, filled with stars.
Using celestial motion as a metaphor for spiritual discovery, Choe expresses in this work an ageless curiosity of creation and the origins of life. Informed also by imagery gathered by the Hubble telescope, the individual pieces reflect an intense meditation on the cosmos as a record of spatial and temporal infinity. “The eye of science is looking at God, the beginning,” says Choe. “The rhythmic cycles of movement in the show attempt to capture vast physical record, and our present understanding of it.”
aeon; cosmic period of inconceivable duration; the time it takes for a universe to form, stabilize and come to an end, it also includes the period of silence after a universe ends.
in Buddhism, several analogies are given attempt its understanding:
Imagine a huge empty cube at the beginning of a kalpa, approximately sixteen miles on each side. Once every 100 years, a tiny mustard seed is inserted into the cube. This huge cube will be filled before the kalpa ends.
Imagine a giant rocky mountain at the beginning of the kalpa, approximately 16 x16 x16miles (dwarfing Mt. Everest). Every 100 years, a small piece of silk is used to wipe the mountain. The mountain will be completely depleted before the kalpa ends.