Taey Iohe

She went through the walls

Sound installation, flexible plastic ducts, 5 projectors, felt beads, 2 blue fluorescent lights, 1 pair rubber boots, 1200cm x 800cm x 600cm

This site specific installation work is an abstracted story of the nomadic subject constituting space. I interviewed Korean American artists (unnamed) who had specific relationship with language experience, and weaved the voice into the sound landscape in an abstract way. 

Fluorescent light, disembodied and stuttering voices, air-ducts, constellations of felt beads on the walls and a ghostly pair of boots commemorate the story of a woman who remains in an imagined space, between her departing language and a translation of her arriving language. 

A Hammer and A Hole
A Hole: What happened in this place?
A Hammer: You don’t need to know. It is nothing to do with you.
A Hole: Well, but I am here now.
A Hammer: You can make your own path from now on.
A Hole: Shouldn’t I need to know the history and context of the place though?
A Hammer: Once you know, your monument is no longer yours. Just get through it.
A Hole: I don’t even know why I need to pierce.
A Hammer: Do drill. That’s how you can get out of here.
A Hole: It will be noisy if the whole place has to be drilled.
- Excerpt from the projected text

At the time of exhibition, the Insa Art Space experienced a number of structural changes each time the administrative priorities of the gallery altered as the government progressively changed from a liberal to a conservative one. The gallery was perceived to be controversial as it was engaged in contemporary critical practice.

The 1st floor at the Insa Art Space (a part of Arko Museum) was originally used as an archive area. Architecturally, it is three cement walled rooms. I deliberately de-realised these part-walls to bring these archive spaces together as a connected space.

It was an archive space, a space for alternative cultural production, a space in which practitioners and thinkers played their own and each other’s roles together. I wanted to retain and re-transmit this spatial memory by de-realising the space but also by commemorating the punctures, traces and marks of memory in the space.

Taey Iohe & Yongjae Lee. A space plan, annexes and connexes
Taey Iohe & Yongjae Lee. A space plan, annexes and connexes

I re-animated the artistic history of the space by placing small coloured felt balls at the places where previous exhibiting artists had placed their screws in the walls; this created both constellations of memory, and a coded language of the relationship between artists.  

This allowed me to re-map the space. The journey marked by the air duct tube, sound and projections is the primary artistic intervention and the first one I carried out when making the piece. It is the nomadic journey, which brings the space into political reality.

Architect, Yongjae Lee, Ilha Lee