Friday, October 7, 6–8pm
October 8– 30, 2016
Press Release: Download PDF
Art in General presents two solo exhibitions of newly commissioned work by David Kennedy Cutler and Juntae Teejay Hwang in partnership with Center for Contemporary Arts, Estonia in Tallinn, Estonia (www.cca.ee). Both artists investigate issues of identity from personal perspectives and larger cultural trends, as mediated by contemporary digital culture. This project is generously supported by the Trust for Mutual Understanding and the Milton and Sally Avery Arts Foundation as part of Art in General’s International Collaborations program.
Juntae TeeJay Hwang’s practice stems from his personal experience living as an uncanny foreigner in the West. Having left Korea at the age of twelve to attend school in the US and the UK, Hwang engages with the collisions, misunderstandings and prejudice that can arise when different cultures come together. Often drawing on the aesthetics of South Korean pop culture and North Korean propaganda, his work attempts to deconstruct Western-centric globalized imagery through a variety of media, including video, installation, painting, and performance. His practice spans a range of approaches, from those that are more confrontational and aggressive in tone, to those that present a more immersive, utopian space that offers freedoms beyond those of daily reality but also captures dystopian aspects within this “reality” simultaneously. Of the new work, presented for the first time in Tallinn, Hwang states:
“Blue Salmon is a new video installation delving into the emotional states of the journey of a salmon that has reached sexual maturity. Blue Salmon is a site-specific ceremonial installation piece offering a service to liberate those salmon that cannot return home. It offers new revolutions, settlements and squatting spots to experience and share with the lost in the hopes of discovering a new safe and suitable breeding ground. The Blue Salmon cannot return to their natal streams due to many restrictions. When sexual maturity is reached, the impossible journey home begins. Blue Salmon attempts to help the lost to find solace within the aqua. Blue Salmon came to this planet after the Colonization Apocalypse occurred and the Western World entered an event horizon, which in turn created an expanse of new territory to be reclaimed and celebrated.
Blue Salmon exists to commemorate all of the Unknowns who have never made it back through countless barriers, who lacked a leader to guide them through their struggles. As the borders thicken and the structures and frameworks become more rigid, few can survive. Even fewer have the ability to tell their own story, as many are under constant duress and demonization from the Other and the Self. Many of these Unknowns die before they can develop so much as a romantic story arc or proper characterization. Offering new cycles and revolutions, Blue Salmon creates diasporic homes for diasporic struggles. The state of being lost pervades through the anxiousness and paranoia of the individual who does not belong.”
Juntae TeeJay Hwang was born in 1991 in Seoul, South Korea and currently lives in New York City. In 2015, he received a BA in Fine Art from the Slade School of Fine Art in London. His emerging career includes the exhibitions Bloomberg New Contemporaries at ICA in London; Performance day at Camden Art Centre in London; Fault lines at ICA in Singapore; In Response to Unorthodox at the Jewish Museum in New York City; the MFA Exhibition at the Wallach Gallery in New York City; Carnage Visors at RUA RED, South Dublin Arts Centre in Ireland; and Theatrescope at the Kyoto University of the Arts in Japan.
Press contact: Lindsey Berfond
Art in General was founded in 1981 and supports the production of new work by local and international artists primarily through its New Commissions Program and its International Collaborations program. Art in General also produces an annual symposium What Now? on critical and timely issues in artistic and curatorial practice.
General Support of Art in General is provided by the Institute of Museum and Library Services; the New York State Council on the Arts with support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature; the Toby D. Lewis Donor Advised Fund of the Jewish Federation of Cleveland; and by individuals. This program is also supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.
The New Commissions Program is made possible by the Trust for Mutual Understanding; National Endowment for the Arts; Jerome Foundation; Ruth Ivor Foundation; The Greenwich Collection; and the Milton and Sally Avery Foundation. Support has also been provided by: Commissioners’ Circle leaders Elaine Goldman, Jeffery Larsen and Joseph Bolduc; Commissioners’ Circle supporters Richard Massey, and David Solo; and Commissioners’ Circle members Nader Ansary, Rob Colangelo, Don Erenberg, Taymour Grahne, Roya Khadjavi-Heidari, Mary Lapides, Leslie Ruff, and Diana Wege.