Breathe Young-chan An’s Solo Show
[Salvatore Marsiglione] - [Art Announcement] - [Tuesday 30th, August 2016]



The MAG Gallery and TOMO Gallery of Kyoto




Young-chan An’s Solo Show


Exhibition curated by Salvatore Marsiglione and Tomoharu Aoyama


Opening:  Thursday September 8th 7.00pm at MAG in Via Vitani, 31 Como.


The exhibition will be on till October 1st 2016 


Opening times: fromTuesday to Saturday 10:00am- 1:00pm and 3.00pm- 7.30pm


Info line : +39 3287521463

With the Patronage of the Association Luigi Russolo’s Archives of Como


For the first time in Italy the solo show of the famous Korean artist Young-chan An with a series of 25  absolutely original  artworks, especially created for Como’s exhibition.



Young-chan An solo show


The 21st century is full of upheaval, and a lot of time has passed since globalization first rang out. In a world where nations and people have become more and more separated, as part of their connection project between East and West, Gallery TOMO and MAG feature the famous Korean artist, Young-chan An. 

Young-chan An was born in Busan in 1959, right after the Korean War cease-fire. Having studied at Osaka University of Arts, he takes his identity from two East Asian countries with indecisive histories. After his first solo exhibition in South Korea in 1985, he has held several solo shows in South Korea, Japan, and the United States, receiving international praise for his energetic style. Indeed, he has a versatile style, with his vividly colored paintings that use traditional Kanshi (Korean paper), sometimes using rubber as a ground. I feel as if these surfaces are like the ground where people lay down their roots. 

Italy and South Korea are both peninsular countries and share a similar fate, having seen interventions from other countries due to their geographical locations. Namely, they share the same fundamental organization. With the development of globalization, we can say that the territory of nation-states, constructed until the early 20th century, has been having its process of dismantling. This is going on with a heartless speed. It is because of this reality that we should use the “soft power” of art to internally understand boundaries and cultural differences,this could be  can be an important element to help people coexistence. 

Two years ago, I saw Nam June Paik’s itinerant exhibition, “The Future is Now” at MAXXI in Rome. One of his concepts is the fusion of East and West, but  also with  the idea that the essential literacy, needed to harmonize cultural differences cannot be attained in a day; perhaps the word “symbiosis” itself is deceitful and impossible. However, this exhibition, playing a role as cutting-edge media art from east Asia, suggested a "definition" of nowadays future. Of course, we are not diplomats, but the role that our art and cultural exchange play is necessary to understand the historical relationship between regional cultures. 

In regards to Young-chan An’s artistic concept, Professor Masahiko Tsubota at the Fine Arts Department, Osaka University of Arts notes: "Young-chan An is an artist who walks by his own breath, at his own place. He is a wine waiting to mature inside a barrel. But by no means he is just waiting. He is pulsating like flowing blood with intense, brilliant colors — red, yellow, and blue. Like volcanic magma, a rich sensibility and talent lies at his core, evoking his true nature. This is what drives his work.” 

This may be an intuitive way of describing his work, but he is neither a printmaker nor a pure painter. He is extremely free. Following the spirit of his age, he investigates the future with a sense of jest. Among his works produced until now, the painting of himself painting a self-portrait on top of a tree, his silkscreens, and his acrylic and oil paintings of dogs are some of the most representative . Without being limited to a certain material, his oeuvre expands infinitely like space. 

There is one concrete motif, however, that runs through all of Young-chan An’s work. In each of his works, boundary lines are painted. These lines that demarcate inner and outer can act as an entrance, but also as an exit. In Buddhism, there is the idea of Shujo (bahujana in Sanscrit), which means that many living things are co-existing in the same world. The boundary lines in his work represent the relationship between himself and others, and an expanding world, different dots make shapes and regions with various movements that protect him , a concept that is uniquely expressed. In 2012, at an exhibition held at Art Core, Los Angeles, this stance and style was widely accepted by Americans, and the show saw excellent sales. 

For this exhibition, as his debut show in Italy, he has prepared completely new artworks. A new page has been turned, like taking a deep breath.

In Como we want to show you the visualization of his traces, the present continuous story of Young-chan An, the artist. 

青山 知相  Tomoharu Aoyama

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