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Hyon Gyon: Emotional Drought

Mar 6 - May 29, 2016

Hyon Gyon


Oil on Canvas

Variable Dimensions

Press Release

Hyon Gyon
Shin Gallery is pleased to present the arrival of Hyon Gyon's Emotional Drought, which will run from March 5th until May 29th in Shin's main exhibition space at 322 Grand Street, New York.

The artist's third solo show with the gallery, this installation truly displays the breadth of her aesthetic's formal and conceptual ingenuities. The show brings together a video installation and multimedia works on canvas, all placed in relation to the show's focal point, Headcount (2016). An insurmountable mass of severed heads formed of scraps from cut away pieces of canvases past, in Headcount, Hyon Gyon adorns each of her sewn together fragments with unique faces, painted identities granted to the underlying specters of suffering produced by her work. Here these used pieces of cloth detached from the body of her work magnificently double as the grubby, decaying flesh of the deceased. Hyon Gyon's production breaches the uncanny, as these figures tossed away in a scene of mass exaction remain undrained of their agency. It is through open eyes, clinched teeth, twitching faces, and a plethora of other features that these questionably alive subjects remain ready to confront viewers with their excruciating, seemingly ongoing suffering.

Speaking of the installation, Hyon Gyon states, "We are living in a society where we've become apathetic to the cruelty inflicted upon others as seen in the media, yet we've begun to treat instances like a mundane and repeated occurrence in every day life." While the artist weaves many comic trinkets throughout the thick build up of her vividly colored, multi-layered paintings, these "charms," as the artist calls them, usually possess a dark drop off by signaling difference, hurt, and war. By making Headcount an unavoidable centerpiece that must be traversed to consider her output in Emotional Drought, Hyon Gyon navigates the role of artist by reconciling the divide between both her aesthetics versus concept weight, and the moment of creation versus reception. Here Hyon Gyon makes sure that her work does not turn into mere glossy skins, purely aesthetic interplays of colors, shapes, and figures, while also wholly reinforcing the idea of the suffering those who pass all around us feel underneath the neatly worn masks they adorn for everyday life.

Hyon Gyon (b.1979) lives and works in New York City. She received her B.A. from Mokwon University in Korea and her M.A. and Ph.D. from Kyoto City University of Arts in Japan. She had one-person and group exhibitions at the Brooklyn Museum for 2015 Brooklyn Artists Ball; Shin Gallery, New York, in 2013; Asian Art Museum of San Francisco, San Francisco, in 2012; Kyoto Art Center, Kyoto, in 2011; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo, in 2007 and 201 O; the Museum of Kyoto, Kyoto, in 2006; and. Hyon Gyon's work is included in, the collections of the Brooklyn Museum, the High Museum of Art, the Frederick R. Weisman Art Foundation, Kyoto Municipal Museum of Art, the Kyoto City University of Arts, and the Takahashi Collection, among others. She has received several fellowships and awards, including the Asao Kato International Scholarship, the Kyoto Cultural Award and the Tokyo Wonder Wall Competition Prize.