Kwon O-Bong's scribbles, or at times awkwardly drawn lines are akin to primal gestures. Like children's doodles on the wall, lines drawn on the dusky rock faces of prehistoric caves - neither text nor drawing, but a certain, clumsy gesture. Upon encountering these vestiges, we are engulfed by some call, as if detecting a sense of presence in the silence. Where does this call come from? Kwon's work stands apart from any pictorial custom or technique. In his productions, the optically driven pictorial practice ceases function. His drawings, for which he unfetters himself to the extent of sprawling out lines with his eyes closed, lack any mechanism for visual control or restriction. Moreover, his hands are liberated from the burdensome expectations of technical prowess. He discards the brush, a tool that demands a certain level of original skill to produce formative effects, and instead selects objects that could focus on swiftly capturing the anonymous traces of the act of delineating or scratching, such as brooms, spits, rakes, or knives. By doing so, the artist critiques the process of inscribing the sublime talent we call paintings as it transpires through the eyes, hands, and then the art object. Abandoning customs and techniques, he delineates, scratches, erases, and throws without hesitation, saying "wow, this could still be a drawing." He does not declare that 'this IS a drawing.' For, such a statement would be equivalent to saying 'this is my talent.' The meaning of talent is surprisingly simple. The criteria begin with the distinction between drawing well and poorly. However, when we say "wow, this could still be a drawing," we are departing from said distinction, and are instead inquiring into art as a pure possibility. But then, who would count as the actual creator of the drawing? Since he randomly picked up an object with his eyes closed, we could say he left himself to the darkness of chaos. Indeed, his drawings seek out the shining black line hidden In the innately dark background. Like the Little Prince who sought something luminous in the silence of the desert under the starts. However, contrary to our preconceived notions, chaos is not disorder, the antonym of order. Rather, chaos is more about nostalgia - a reminder of the primary force we once harbored but then lost. One day, like the nostalgia invoke by the chaos of Twombly whom he deemed a fellow traveler, chaos becomes the order that awakens the order we lost and cannot recover. Therefore, we also speak of cosmos when we mention chaos. What we encounter In Kwon O-Bong's work is not an artist whose talent has been embodied and packaged for presentation, but his essential shadow, the artist himself as a personhood.
Night Stroll (Excerpt) _ Dal-Seung Lee (Art Critic)