Doo-jin Ahn

Pigment, Painting, Physical

Doo-jin Ahn

Knowledge of the world causes obsessive compulsion. Previously unknown facts ranging from the super-macro to the super-micro impose countless worldviews with seemingly limitless linguistic or visual versions. Surprisingly, these worldviews may be translated into graphic images and disseminated through pop culture in science documentaries, sci-fi films, and animations. But through such simplification, the worldviews of artists can carry particularly fascinating implications. According to physicists like Brian Greene, we might exist among infinite parallel universes, each completely different from the one that we perceive. Theories of quantum mechanics assert that the universe ramifies into countless possibilities. When the world of an artist’s works manifests a worldview unto itself, it becomes one of these possibilities.

Doo-jin Ahn’s worldview is well represented in his landscape paintings. The first thing to note is the unusual perspective that does not distinguish between the near and far, but rather enlarges the small and shrinks the large. Another defining trait is the relatively dark ambiance, dominated by shades of reddish-pink that resemble the methane clouds of Titan, one of Saturn’s moons. At least the atmosphere seems to be breathable, based on the presence of trees, grasses, and even the occasional person. Third, Ahn’s landscapes are populated by giant rocks, which almost seem to be the dominant species. Indeed, the hierarchy of this world might be “mineral-vegetable-animal,” rather than “animal-vegetable-mineral.” Perhaps it is a world where rocks think and plants dominate the ecosystem, while animals make up the substructure.

The universe that created this world is rainbow-colored. Indeed, this rainbow indwells everything in the universe, large or small. Or perhaps this world is evolving into a paradise where the cosmic energy of this rainbow colors all creation. The artist must also be moving on his own path. All of the revelations of this world are emitted as noise, as in KuKuKuKung. Beneath the surface of this world is a flowing river or vast sea of sharp lines, which sometimes rise above ground, as in Kung! Kung!

Also in this world, thought has the capacity to reverse time. This world can be surveyed in the nine major works of this exhibition, each entitled Moving Stone, in which a massive rock in a forest moves backwards through time, retracing its path through the past until it disappears over the horizon like an airplane taking flight. Everything consists of conceptual arrangements that completely diverge from our known world.

Similarly, Doo-jin Ahn’s art is unlike anything else in the world of contemporary art. Looking at these landscapes can feel like stepping into the realm of insanity brought on by obsessive compulsive disorder. Indeed, Ahn’s painting process does entail extreme meticulousness and infinite repetition. As such, what is visualized in these paintings might actually be the landscape of his interior mind.

Artistic Director Jinsang Yoo

It’s movement. It’s constant movement. From the perspective of particle physics, nothing is still, and electrons move at the speed of light in atomic units. I can’t believe it, but right this second, while I’m sitting at my desk, I’m moving at the speed of light, and I’ve been writing this for hours at the speed of light, so this writing can already cover the entire distance of the solar system. In any case, like the ever-moving particles, the paints of a finished painting are also constantly moving to preserve themselves at each individual event-layer. The fact that paints are constantly moving at the speed of light is even more striking than a double negation!

from artist’s notes

Doo-jin Ahn
b.1975
Solo Exhibitions
2019

Tide: Goooo-, Leehwaik Gallery, Seoul

2017

Trade Art Lounge: Doo-jin Ahn, Trade Tower, Seoul

2016

Planning & Selfing, Leehwaik Gallery, Seoul

2014

A Stone, Johyun Gallery, Busan

2013

Oort Cloud, Leehwaik Gallery, Seoul

2012

A Morning in the Limbo, Space Can, Beijing

2011

The Fault Lines, Songeun Art Space, Seoul

2009

History of Izzard, Cais Gallery, Hong Kong

2008

Covert Party at Makcom, Project Space Sarubia, Seoul

2006

Saint Brain Temple, Brain Factory, Seoul

2005

Fantastic Hot Story, Gyeonggi Cultural Foundation, Suwon

Selected Group Exhibitions
2020

The 40th Anniversary of the May 18 Democratic Uprising Special Exhibition: To Reach a Star, Gwangju Museum of Art, Gwangju

Autumn Breeze, Leehwaik Gallery, Seoul
Garden, Leehwaik Gallery, Seoul
Time to Say Hello, Gallery Royal, Seoul
2019

The Adventures of Korean Painting: I Will Go Away All by Myself, National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Korea, Cheongju

Chongkundang Yesuljisang: The Era of the Painting, Sejong Museum of Art, Seoul
2017

Meta-scape, Wooyang Museum of Contemporary Art, Gyeongju

2016

Changwon Sculpture Biennale, Sungsan Art Hall, Changwon

2015

Chongkundang Yesuljisang, Gana Insa Art Center, Seoul

2014

Neo Sansu, Daegu Art Museum, Daegu

The Eyes on Painting: Multi-painting, OCI Museum of Art, Seoul
2013

Super Natural, CHRISTIE’S Gallery, New York

La Convivencia, Gallery Chosun, Seoul
2012

Galapagos, Ilmin Museum of Art, Seoul

Thinking of Sarubia,Leehwaik Gallery, Seoul
Young Artists Project: Meta Empire, EXCO, Daegu
Korean Eye, Saatchi Gallery, London
Hanok Project: Open Studio, Hanok Studio, Seoul
Shift, Johyun Gallery, Seoul
Testing Testing 1. 2. 3, Songeun Art Space, Seoul
2011

Haein Art Project, Haein Temple, Hapcheon

Decameron: Disclosure of Subconscious Desires, Space Can, Beijing
Thinking of Sarubia, Gana Contemporary, Seoul
Shift, Johyun Gallery, Seoul
2010

Collage of Memory, Soka Art Center, Beijing

Korea Tomorrow, SETEC 3, Seoul
Space-Transformation, Oulim Nuri Arts Center, Goyang
Real Antenna, Space Haam, Seoul
Healing, SMA Seongbuk Young Art Space, Seoul
In Between, One & J Gallery, Seoul
Lack of Being, Interalia, Seoul
Gazing Beyond, Gallery b’ONE, Seoul
Mongin Art Space Open Studio, Mongin Art Space, Seoul
Point, Kyoto Art Center, Kyoto
S.A.I.C: From Desire to Sublime, Hongik Museum of Art, Seoul
2009

Room Project: One Day, Total Museum of Contemporary Art, Seoul

A New Common Sense of Space, Museo della Scienza della Tecnologia Leonardo da Vinci, Milan
Io, Harlem Studio Fellowship, New York
Doors, Sylvia Wald and Po Kim Art Gallery, New York
Up and Comers, Total Museum of Contemporary Art, Seoul
Do Window, Gallery Hyundai, Seoul
Joongang Fine Arts Prize, Hangaram Art Museum of Seoul Arts Center, Seoul
2008

I am an Artist-Young Korean Artist, National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Korea, Gwacheon

Busan Biennale: Sea Art Festival, Me-world, Busan
Point, Alternative Space LOOP, Seoul
The Bridge, Insa Art Center, Seoul
Privacy, Alternative Space LOOP, Seoul
Privacy, Gallery Eighty, Singapore
Privacy, Canvas International Art, Amsterdam
2007

Stress Fighter, Alternative Space Pool, Seoul

Hi Pop, Yemac Gallery, Seoul
Nice to Meet You, Lewisham Arthouse, London
Art Forecast, Nam-Seoul Museum of Art, Seoul
The Surplus Time, The Gallery, Seoul
Hey Jude, Gallery Royal, Seoul
2006

Drawn to Drawing, Seoul Olympic Museum of Art, Seoul

Door to Door 4, Alternative Space Pool, Seoul
2005

Pop-i-Con, Kimi Art Gallery, Seoul

Joongang Fine Arts Prize, Hangaram Art Museum of Seoul Arts Center, Seoul
Cutting Edge, Seoul Auction Space, Seoul
2004

Art and Playing, Hangaram Art Museum of Seoul Arts Center, Seoul

Attack the Soy Factory, Sempio Space, Incheon
Talking to the Wall, ARKO Art Center, Seoul
Award
2013

Chongkundang Yesuljisang, Korea Mecenat Association, Artspace Hue, Chongkundang Holdings Co.

Residencies
2011

Can Foundation Hanok Project, Seoul

10월-08

Mongin Art Studio, Seoul

2009

Harlem Studio Fellowship, New York

8월-07

MMCA Residency Changdong, Seoul

Collections

National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Korea

Seoul Museum of Art

Gyeonggi Museum of Modern Art

Songeun Art Space

Oliver Stone Collections

Colección Solo