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New monumental installation by Haegue Yang presented at Haus der Kunst in Munich
Haegue Yang, "Accommodating the Epic Dispersion – On Non-cathartic Volume of Dispersion", 2012. Photo: Jens Weber, München.

MUNICH.- Haus der Kunst presents a new monumental installation by Haegue Yang, "Accommodating the Epic Dispersion – On Non-cathartic Volume of Dispersion". As announced in May, this installation is the first in a series of commissioned work that will be exhibited in the museum's 800 square-meter Middle Hall over a period of one year. The series, "Der Öffentlichkeit – Von den Freunden Haus der Kunst", begins on November 9.

Like Haegue Yang's dOCUMENTA 13 contribution, "Accommodating the Epic Dispersion – On Non-cathartic Volume of Dispersion" consists of Venetian blinds suspended from the ceiling. These elements are structured in three autonomous, yet united parts: a massive towering structure, which is confrontationally located at the hall's entrance; a flat vertical grid wall; and a voluminous rectangle on top, which is gradually fragmented toward the floor. Depending on the angle of approach, the blinds overlap in a varying number of layers, and the interplay of light and shadow changes depending on the location. At times, the installation appears completely opaque, and at others, completely translucent.

The installation's title, which itself occupies a significant amount of space, forms the counterpart to the multiple layers of blinds that sometimes hinder the unimpeded view into the Hall. The title also alludes to Haegue Yang's inspirations, which lie in the literary processing of migration and diaspora.

The literary models Haegue Yang names in this context are individuals of diaspora: Suh Kyongsik explores the destiny of Koreans in Japan, Marguerite Duras the French colony of Indochina, and George Orwell the former British colony, Burma. These authors and their characters take on different positions of privilege and precariousness in the diaspora, and according to Haegue Yang, their post-colonial narrative "overpasses continents, decades, and centuries, and is still too complex to understand."

Born in Seoul, Korea, in 1971, Haegue Yang has lived in Germany since 1994 and is therefore well aware of the challenges faced by those living in a foreign country. The actions and decisions of these authors and their characters with immigrant and post-colonial biographies allow the artist the possibility of comparison and identification, whilst also inspiring her work, which also explores migration and uncertainty.

Haegue Yang translates these issues into a spatial experience and introduces abstraction into the narrative: Walking through the installation, the visitor explores the relationship between space, dimensions, weight and volume, where force and control are manifest, where they are weaker and even lost, and where they are recreated or being reconstructed.

Haegue Yang has exhibited her works in major international institutions, including BAK/basis voor actuele kunst, Utrecht (2006), Portikus, Frankfurt (2008), Artsonje Center, Seoul (2010), New Museum, New York (2010), Kunsthaus Bregenz (2011), and Modern Art Oxford (2011). In 2009 she represented South Korea at the 53rd Venice and participated this year in dOCUMENTA 13.

The commission "Der Öffentlichkeit" at Haus der Kunst addresses a generation of artists who have developed a clear and challenging line of artistic inquiry, and is grounded in the idea of the central role that art and artists play in global debates. With this series, Haus der Kunst wishes to acknowledge international artists who, over the course of their careers, exemplify and have demonstrated models of artistic excellence, conceptual rigor, experimental spirit, and whose ideas have had enduring impact in contemporary art and its discourses.

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