Sangchul Choi: A Thousand Traces
A Thousand Traces, opening September 25, 2020 at AV Modern & Contemporary retraces the evolution of South-Korean painter Choi Sangchul's quests for the ultimate "nature painting". Starting from the 1970's, the works on view take the visitor through five decades of experimentations and research in minimal abstraction ending with Choi's strikingly visionary recent series of works "Mumool" (state of nothingness).
Promoting meditation, isolation and immersion in nature to the point of fusion Choi's practice resonates with our shared confined experience like a durable way of life in a plagued world, and we may ask ourselves: does artist Choi Sangchul detain the cure ?
AV Modern & Contemporary is pleased to present its first solo exhibition of Korean artist CHOI Sangchul (1946) A thousand Traces, on view from September 25, 2020.
The exhibition will constitute Choi’s first solo exhibition in Europe, showcasing 30 works that span the artist’s career from the late 1970's up to 2019. This exhibition hopes to elevate Choi’s unique singular vision which helped define Korean modernism and contemporary art.
Minimalism was a popular movement and a strong inspiration for a good number of artists in Korea in the 1970's. During his five-decade career Choi has distinguished himself by pushing minimalism to the point of withdrawing even the painters will, thoughts and control over the painting.
In his most recent work series “Mumool” (state of nothingness), using tools such as stones or bamboo sticks - found in his studio’s surroundings - and black pigment, Choi follows strict rules that forbid his own subjectivity to alter the creative process.
Resisting against artificiality, his intent is to “paint” as nature would. Choi believes he becomes himself a part of nature when his mind, freed of parasite thoughts, concentrates only on the movement. The finished work is not the esthetical satisfaction of the painter but the result, always, of a thousand repeated gestures: dropping a stone, tilting the canvas to let the stone roll...
Often compared to western action painters such as Jackson Pollock, Choi answers feeling closer to the process of french-polish artist Roman Opalka: “Like a monk holding his life through one topic of meditation, he continues his art tirelessly and tenaciously. I am looking forward to the day when I use white paint, to write numbers on a white canvas. What will the last number be? ”.