The best kimchi I have ever eaten was in Yeosu nearly a decade ago. Dolsan Gat-Kimchi is made with mustard leaves and is amazing–or at least the batch I had at a local Yeosu seafood (obviously) restaurant was sublime. What does this have to do with photography? Nothing. It’s just a lead in for the fact that Yeosu is Bae Bien-U’s hometown.
Bae has been discussed previously on this blog. And, he will be discussed again, eventually, as I have a third book of his work on my shelf awaiting a review and he is one of the most iconic figure in Korean photography.
The subject of this review is a small perfect bound exhibition catalog published in conjunction with an exhibit at the Art Sonje Center in 2002. It’s focus is not on Bae’s pine trees but rather is on four other series of photographs: Seascapes, Mountainscapes, Skyscapes and Rockscapes. These are series that I am less familiar with–and probably for good reason. This isn’t a masterful book, but an interesting one nonetheless. Continue reading
As regular readers may have noticed, the blog has been quiet the last two weeks. I’ve missed two consecutive Sundays. Professional life has been extremely busy and I’ve been under the gun to deliver on multiple projects for various clients. It’s been a little hectic, and posting here has had to take a back seat.
Regular posting should resume this coming Sunday and continue on from there.
Read without the hyphen, the title of Bo Bae Kim’s book, inter-view, suggests the act of asking questions. First question: what or who is being questioned? Second question: who is to ask these questions? The book’s first photograph is of theater seats. The seats are empty; the theater is dim; light from somewhere catches on the seats’ smooth leather. We are not the audience. Are we the show? Has the audience left, or are we awaiting its arrival? Several photographs in we come across a figure sprawled on a rocky beach. Her position is unnatural. Has she been tossed back by the sea, drowned? Or has she been posed? Are we witnesses, and if so to what?
Questions come fast and furious from any photograph–every photograph. A good interview has direction with questions that lead with intent. The hyphen in the book’s title can give direction to our questions. “Inter-” is rich with possibility. It tells us the answers we are looking for are between and among, together and during the photographs.