Art is meant to expose the lunacy of the prosaic, not to highlight a daily life consisting of insanities. Perhaps that is the essence of art practice in this everyday hypothesis.
— Curatorial statement of Everyday Hypothesis, TKG+ Projects, March 2016
To substantiate the workaday nature of an exhibition is an act of self-justification. The run-of-the-mill activities that lead up to an exhibition usually demonstrate a state of unthinkingness, which can hardly be explained or defended. Only when an alternative behavior pattern arises will the viewer be galvanized to question the production mechanism of an exhibition. It is in this context that Under Construction becomes a reaction to exhibition conventions.
What signifies the completion of an exhibition? What is the relationship between the production mechanism and an artwork that parallels the exhibition curatorial? What kind of reactionary response from the viewer is provoked when art practice becomes a radical project? How is the production relationship constructed between the curator of a gallery and the exhibiting artist? To delve into these questions, perhaps we should first ponder the out-of-the-ordinary, because we can’t begin to deliberate the essence of art practice until our preconceived notions collapse into anarchy.
The collaboration between Lee Johong and the TKG+ Projects is an effort to push artistic boundaries, allowing the artist not only to harness his familiar media of video and performance to investigate the human perception of time, but to examine the production system and the concept of space in a so-called exhibition through physical labor and the moving image. Under Construction becomes a reactionary project where the continuous process of installing the exhibition becomes the exhibition itself; the curator and the artist are engaged in a creative exchange aimed at redefining art practice; the gallery and the artist are involved in a debate concerning the equivocal start date of the exhibition. Even this curatorial statement was written three days after the exhibition quietly opened.
In the exhibition space, there is a worktable where the artist works daily for the duration of the exhibition. Installed above the worktable is a camera which in each second captures the light and in five seconds delineates the obscured image of the artist and the tabletop. The artist will paint the tabletop white before he leaves at the end of the day. Everything that has been documented will be projected onto the table tomorrow. The process repeats daily. Meanwhile, standing in the space is a large wall onto which a video is projected. The video shows the artist painting the wall white. Across from the wall is a long shelf that stores each dated memory card that holds the imagery of the artist at work. His daily act of mounting the exhibition epitomizes the trajectory of his creative thought that parallels the symbiotic relationship between the production process, art practice, exhibition mechanism, gallery administration, and art collection. The quotidian aspect of the exhibition is thus divulged in the two works on view Desktop (2017) and Under Construction (2017), where buried under layers and layers of cement paint and superimposed moving image is a radical practice executed by the artist through repetitive physical labor, challenging the viewer’s preconceived notions of what constitutes an exhibition.