Park Seung Mo

Self Portrait with Bandaged Ear and Pipe, 2014
Stainless Steel Wire Mesh , 161 x 145 cm

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About the artwork

This work by Korean artist Park Seung Mo takes inspiration from Vincent Van Gogh’s iconic painting ‘Self Portrait with Bandaged Ear and Pipe’. Rather than an expressionist colour palette, this piece is rendered in monochrome, a signature of Park’s works and has a striking and evocative quality. ‘Van Gogh’ stares towards the viewer, drawing them in with his unceasing, haunting gaze. Park’s captivating portraits are created through a painstaking technique of overlapping layers of wire, and subsequently snipping away areas of mesh and netting to contribute depth, movement and dimensionality to his works.



About the artist

Born in Korea in 1969, Park Seung Mo graduated from Dong-A University with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in 1998 and is based in Brooklyn. He explores fundamental ideas through the use of forms, creating large ephemeral portraits by layering frames of wire mesh together and cutting through the layers to create depth. Each work begins with a photograph which is superimposed upon the overlapping layers of wire with a projector. He then employs a subtractive technique of snipping away areas of mesh and netting. Each piece is several inches thick and the plane that forms the final image contains spaces that are a few finger widths apart, which contribute depth, movement and dimensionality to the portraits. 

In works such as Mong-hwan (Fantasy), Hwan-sang (Illusion) and Hwan-myeol (Disillusion), Park speaks of ‘hwan’ or fantasies and visions that feel as if they were real. He turns these fantasies into visual illusion of wire and explains “what is important for me is showing the audience the moment where the boundary between the real and the illusion break down.”

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