Keun Young Park's finely textured collages approach the veracity of photographs. As they should, since that’s exactly what they were before the artist saturated them in color and ripped them into thousands of pieces, only to painstakingly reconstitute them into quiet images of faces, draped arms, and cupped hands.
According to the artist’s gallery, Accola Griefen, Park shows the body in transformation, suspended in between disintegration and reassembly, caught between chaos and order. The thin, veinlike gaps between the bits of paper create the effect of digital pixilation, while their irregular shapes attest to their handmade quality.
“I believe that everything is constantly changing, either being generated or destroyed,” writes the South Korean–born, New Jersey–based artist. “Presence is just a state of being, and the reality of an object has ambiguity in this shifting.” And through the process of tearing up photos and imperfectly pasting them together, she represents our own struggle to grasp the tremulous, fleeting nature of existence.[Photos by Joon Hyun Hwang]