Mi Rim Chu

Save As

Mi Rim Chu

In her works, Mi Rim Chu expresses a worldview that recalls Ovid’s The Metamorphoses, in which different modes of existence—such as god, human, animal, and object—somehow become compatible with one another. Hence, Daphne is transformed into a laurel, Actaeon becomes a deer, and hybrid creatures such as the Minotaur appear. The interchangeability of these disparate systems constitutes a narrative that takes place at the point of contact between these entities, which ultimately transforms the prevailing attitude of the time. Likewise, Mi Rim Chu enacts a world in which systems of objects, images, signs, and information are compatible with each other. In this world, by converting or reformatting their component particles, each system generates a cycle that leads to a completely different function and identity.
The exhibition title Save As refers to the way that computer files are given new identities or formats. Mi Rim Chu saves a landscape photo or satellite view as a screenshot or image file, and then generates minimal symbols or shapes from the pixelated images. She then converts these new images into a vector file from Adobe Illustrator in order to print them, or transforms them into three-dimensional relief works using stencils or paper blocks. This process can sometimes lead to installation works, wherein Chu induces audience interaction by covering an interior space or outer wall with her images, printed on contact paper. In other cases, she combines relief or installation works with videos showing an endless chain reaction of symbols and shapes. In summary, Chu’s works represent the operation of an expansive system that begins from a basic pixel unit that spawns limitless growth, connectivity, and combination.
The artist views this system as a type of parallel urban space. Pixel Space, her series of drawings and acrylic paintings that began in 2007, led to her installation www.the world we live in (2013). These works are based on concise drawings of colored pixel shapes, reminiscent of Tetris blocks, as well as various events surrounding these pixels. In both Home_Yangpyeong-dong, Bundang, and Paris 15th Arrondisement, which were also produced in 2013, the artist used paper blocks to create a relief work depicting the urban landscape from a bird’s-eye view. In subsequent works, Chu’s symbols and shapes became more abstract, leading to Stencil Series (2016), in which symbols reminiscent of data infographics are complexly assembled and simultaneously rendered as both drawings and mural paintings. This work shows how the artist’s holistic worldview has widened to encompass not only patterns and rhythms, but also attractive and exceptional graphic objects.
This expansion has continued in recent works such as 9 Color Spectrum, Day, and Blue Island, which realize integrative environments based on graphic units. Originating from “found” information or data gleaned from the nonstop flood of images of contemporary life, these symbols are decontextualized to become part of a new utopian landscape. Suddenly adorned in vivid colors, these symbols herald the arrival of a new narrative and a different world. Depending on minute discrepancies in the ways that the deep chasm of light is exposed or amassed, the symbols become wind, rivers, mountains, or a landscape filled with clouds.

Artistic Director Jinsang Yoo
Mi Rim Chu
Solo Exhibitions

Satellites, Gallery LUX, Seoul


New Modules Born from a Rippling Grid, Trunk Gallery, Seoul


P.O.I(Point of Interest), Space Willing N Dealing, Seoul


www.The World We Live In, Gallery Steph, Singapore


418: I Am a Teapot, Die Galerie, Seoul

Selected Group Exhibitions

No Space, Just a Place. Heterotopia, Daelim Museum, Seoul


The Way a Hare Transforms into a Turtle, Nikolaj Kunsthal, Copenhagen

Space Exploration, Gyeongnam Art Museum, Changwon


Two Pillars and Seven Letters, Seoul Museum of Art, Seoul

Daegu New-Bauhaus, Daegu Art Factory, Daegu


25.7, Buk-Seoul Museum of Art, Seoul

Wonderland, Art Center White Block, Paju

Bird’s-Eye View, Space Can, Seoul

City Observation Log, Art Canbus, Siheung


Confession of a Mask, Seoul National University Museum of Art, Seoul


Three Wishes for Christmas, Art Center Nabi, Seoul


Korea Tomorrow, Seoul Art Center, Seoul


Wonderful Pictures, Ilmin Museum of Art, Seoul

International Incheon Women Artists Biennale: So Close Yet Far Away, Incheon

Seogyo Sixty: The Game for Respect, KT&G Sangsangmadang, Seoul


Grand Prize, Unknown Asia Art Exchange Osaka


National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Korea

Hanhwa Dream House