JeeYoung Lee, ‘The Little Match Girl’, 2008, Opiom Gallery

Based on Hans Christian Andersen?s story of the same title, this work is to impart the meaning of hope and will to matches.

The walls were painted like the sky to show the ambience of the outside street, and hanging cotton is used to express the clouds in the sky and on the ground to show fallen snow.

While the little girl in Andersen?s story strikes her matches to keep herself warm but eventually dies, the girl in my photograph is not destined to die. A match is a derisive thing whose value isn?t so appreciated, and yet it has a great potential as an ember. It can smolder and go out quickly, but it can also start a huge fire depending on where it is applied. Fire, the powerful energy that has led mankind to civilizations, can have so great an influence. There are some burnt-out and some unused matches scattered on the ground. The matches are my willpower and the one who can start the flame is indeed, me. Through this piece, I wanted to let it be known that one is a small being but each existence has an inalienable value. Speaking of the snow, it is just beautiful, but it wears a double face to those who aren?t prepared. I wanted to express myself who tries to get my hopes up even when the reality is as cold and hard as the snow-covered field.

Lee JeeYoung