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Iván Navarro transforms Gallery Hyundai into a synesthetic experience
Iván Navarro, 'Murio Le Verdad', 2013, neons, synchronizer, wood, paint, mirror, one-way mirror and electric energy, 121.9 x 121.9 cm x 25.4 cm. Courtesy the artist and Gallery Hyundai.

SEOUL.- This April, Iván Navarro transforms Gallery Hyundai into a synesthetic experience with his exhibition The Moon in The Water . The Chilean-born artist’s second solo show with the gallery provides the viewers with three distinct environments, triggering the sensory system through sound, sight, and movement.

This survey exhibition spans three floors in the gallery. The basement level showcases his Drums series (2009-2018) including ‘Bomb, Bomb, Bomb’ (2014) and ‘Revolution IV’ (2017). The works visually represent sound, marking a language play between sound and spelling. ‘Die Again (Monument for Tony Smith)’ (2006) is also on show, an immersive work which considers the transcendence of nationality, alienation and a state of limbo. New pieces on display include a ladder work in red neon, ‘Emergency Ladder’ (2017), and Vanity series (2018). The latter consists of 3 mirrors – a square, triangle and circle – each with a poem sandblasted onto them so that the text is transparent. People can watch themselves and others in the piece, and at the same time read a visual poem whose meaning is reflected in the form of the object.

Navarro’s experiences growing up under the dictatorship of General Augusto Pinochet have shaped his artistic practice. His early conceptual works reflect the collective psychological trauma of his native country, combining mundane and domestic symbols with the visual language of power. The recurrent use of electricity in his works alludes to the torture and human rights violations inflicted upon the Chilean population. He also applies similar themes in a global context using issues such as capital punishment, migration and propaganda as points of departure. Best known for his socio-politically charged sculptures of neon, fluorescent and incandescent light, Navarro’s works act as both sensory and psychological games, relying on the presence of the viewer to be fully activated.

Navarro creates sound works that are often tied to the physical works. He also has a music label Hueso Records which produces limited edition vinyls; though the music is also available on digital platforms. This year Navarro will also be creating the lighting for a new theater in Chile designed by Chilean architect Smiljan Radic which opens in March, and is additionally involved in a project with the Paris Metro creating work for one of its new stations.

Navarro (b. 1972, Santiago, Chile) lives and works in Brooklyn, New York. His work has featured in solo and group exhibitions at prominent institutions and galleries worldwide including: Luz y Espacio, Guggenheim Bilbao, Bilbao, Spain (2017); Light Show , Hayward Gallery, London, UK; Auckland Art Gallery, Auckland, New Zealand; Sharjah Art Foundation, Sharjah, UAE; and CorpArtes, Santiago, Chile (2013 - 2016); This Land is Your Land , Madison Square Park, New York; NorthPark Centre, Dallas, Texas; and Nasher Museum of Art, Durham, North Carolina, USA (2014-2016); Una Guerra Silenciosa e Imposible , Corpartes Foundation, Santiago, Chile (2015); Under the Same Sun , Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, USA (2014); Chile: Behind the Scenes , Espace Culturel Louis Vuitton, Paris, France (2010); and Refract, Reflect, Project: Light Works from the Collection , Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington D.C., USA (2007). He represented Chile at the 53rd Venice Biennale in 2009. His work is held in permanent collections internationally including: the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, USA; The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden Washington, USA; Nelson-Atkins Museums, Kansas City, USA; LVMH Collection, Paris, France; Saatchi Collection, London, UK; Centro Galego de Arte Contemporanea, Santiago de Compostela, Spain; and National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Seoul, South Korea.

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