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Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego presents installations by Do Ho Suh
Installation view, Do Ho Suh , The Contemporary Austin – Jones Center, Austin, 2014. Courtesy the artist; Lehmann Maupin, New York and Hong Kong; and the Kronos Collection. Photograph by Brian Fitzsimmons.


SAN DIEGO, CA.- The Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego filled its Downtown location with works by artist Do Ho Suh from March 18, 2016 through July 4, 2016. Do Ho Suh was originated by The Contemporary Austin, and arrives in San Diego following its showing at Museum of Contemporary Art Cleveland. This solo exhibition features work ranging from large-scale architectural installations and sculptures, to works on paper and video. Operating within a distinctly twenty-first century global mode, Suh crafts evocative works that reflect ideas of home, identity, and personal space.

Suh is known locally in San Diego for his permanently installed Fallen Star sculpture at University of California, San Diego, as part of the university’s Stuart Collection.

In his work, Suh draws on his personal experiences growing up in Seoul, South Korea, studying art in the U.S., and moving homes several times over the course of his life. He now lives a global and “nomadic” existence, with homes in New York, London, and Seoul. Inspired by his personal history and biography, the artist’s sculptures and installations reveal a range of powerful themes, including notions of public versus private space, global identity, memory, and displacement. At the same time, Suh’s works strike viewers with their delicate monumentality, subtle beauty, and intricate construction techniques.

This exhibition transformed MCASD Downtown’s Jacobs Building into a maze-like installation that replicates the artist’s apartment spaces from a single building in New York City. Created in luminous swaths of translucent fabric, the ghostly rooms and hallways are mysteriously supported by a subtle stainless steel armature. Three combined installations—Apartment A, 348 West 22nd Street, New York, NY 10011, USA (2011–2012); Corridor and Staircase, 348 West 22nd Street New York, NY 10011, USA (2011–2012); and Unit 2, 348 West 22nd Street, New York, NY 10011, USA (2014)—encourage the public to pass through the ephemeral, dreamlike representation of the artist’s personal history. Rendered in blocks of translucent color, the fabric walls at once conceal and reveal the details articulated within. A long, salmon-colored corridor connects to a bright red stairway suspended from the ceiling. A veil of blue walls contains a kitchen, bathroom, and living spaces with details including window moldings and interior fixtures. In Unit 2, the artist’s latest and final work in the series, yellow walls describe additional rooms, which the artist added to his New York apartment and that served alternately as his studio space and living quarters.

In contrast to this bright, airy space, the artist’s Specimen Series (2013) is installed in illuminated vitrines in a darkened gallery. These sculptures replicate appliances and fixtures in exacting detail and, like the larger installations, are constructed entirely out of polyester fabric over a stainless steel framework. For instance, in Specimen Series: Stove, Apartment A, 348 West 22nd Street, APT. New York, NY 10011 (2013), elements such as the stove top burners and control knobs are rendered with meticulous realism. At the same time, the ghostly translucency of the blue fabric comprising the sculpture lends a delicate, otherworldly air to what would otherwise be a heavy cast metal fixture.

The exhibition also includes a selection of works on paper, rendered in thread, watercolor, and pencil, as well as videos and a model from Suh’s 2012 work, Secret Garden.

Born in Seoul, South Korea, in 1962, Do Ho Suh currently lives and works in London, New York City, and Seoul. Suh received his Bachelor of Fine Arts and Master of Fine Arts degrees in Oriental Painting from Seoul National University before moving to the United States, where he received a BFA from the Rhode Island School of Design (1994) and an MFA from Yale University (1997).

Suh’s recent solo exhibitions and projects include Home within Home within Home within Home within Home, National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Seoul (2013); Do Ho Suh: Perfect Home, 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa, Japan (2012–2013); In Between, Hiroshima City Museum of Contemporary Art, Hiroshima (2012); Fallen Star, Stuart Collection, University of San Diego, California (2012); and Home within Home, Leeum, Samsung Museum of Art, Seoul (2012). The artist represented Korea at the 2001 Venice Biennale. The artist’s work is included in museum collections worldwide, including the Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York City; the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Los Angeles; the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis; Tate Modern, London; the Leeum, Samsung Museum of Art and Artsonje Center, Seoul; the Museum of Contemporary Art and Mori Art Museum, Tokyo; and the 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa, Japan, among many others. In 2013, Suh was named WSJ. Magazine’s Art Innovator of the Year.





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