Theme header Nayoung Kim - Back Lane West

Nayoung Kim

September 2013 resident artist Nayoung Kim spent an intense September in Cornwall – her first visit to the UK – exploring and processing both a very different – for Nayoung – rural and urbanised culture in Cornwall, and its past and present industrial mining experiential presence.


Nayoung Kim is a Korean artist, presently based in Paris at the Cite Internationale des Arts.

Kim addresses landscape as a construct born of a mixture of the picturesque, exoticism and urbanity. Her work is built from raw materials through basic assemblies – becoming installations to contemplate as architecture and as landscape. Scale is uncertain.

Artist statement/comment:

« Every act of looking turns into observation, every act of observation into reflection, every act of reflection into the making of associations; thus it is evident that we theorize every time we look carefully at the world.» (Goethe, J. W. von, Theory of Color, Miller 159)

The gaze and reinterpretation are two elements that extend across my research. My work starts from observations of the landscape. The reality of the landscape exists there for me in various forms. As a green field painted green, the painted surface plays a decisive role in the appearance and expressiveness of the Korean landscape. In the same manner, France exports the idealized beauty of its landscapes and its buildings through images, attracting tourists. Also, the sublime, picturesque landscape persists in my head. What do these pictorial landscapes mean and where do they take me to? In situating myself between what incites us to see and what remains hidden behind the smooth surface of images or realities around us, I develop a questioning of the perception of the landscape. It is the passage from pictorial things to real things that I freeze in deliberate space and time. What is interesting in my opinion, is to reveal the characteristic of those scenic phenomena, and then divert them or recombine them to find a new facet of the urban landscape. While the landscape of the past in paint becomes the sublime, what brings us closer to the urban landscape? Putting physically my gaze on the landscape, I recompose the landscape with mundane images or trivial materials. From a simple layout of elements and an enhancement of materials, my installations are the result of a process aiming at a break. Assuming the reality of the urban landscape, I allow myself to extract an aesthetic possibility from the elements.