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A brushstroke made in one second....
Une œuvre de Hyunlak Lim
Hyunlak Lim expose dans Made in Korea, (avec Youn Sup Kim, Yoon Young Park et Eun Sil Lee) à la cité internationale des arts dans le cadre de l’année France Corée à l’instigation de l’université de Paris I une installation et une vidéo inspirée dans laquelle on perçoit comme un souffle d’âme.
A brushstroke made in one second can last an eternity
Unlike he tried to express the nature of human and take it as the subject of his artwork in his early days, an artist, Hyunlak Lim’s recent works show us his effort to harmonize with nature. Being in a life and death situation in his early forties, his point of view on art has changed from nature to life that makes all of natural phenomena occur. His attitude to art shows us a strong attachment to life and the wonders of being alive after overcoming colorectal cancer, rather than his interest in the value of human existence, in which anyone feels interested for a while. His artwork, ‘A stroke (duration : 1 sec.)’ tells us about the meaning of a moment, in which one might feel alive.
We often use a word, ‘a moment  in our daily lives. It means a very short period of time, during which something will of may happen at any moment or any moment now. He continuously marks a dot and draws a line on his paper as if proving that he is alive. The value of one second is shown at the moment he makes a brushstroke and expresses the breathing of a life form. The trace of breathing seems to appear on a Korean traditional paper, hanji for a while or a while longer. Those lines of ink form a tree and leaves on the void, running toward the river and the sea.
“Temporality temporalizes as a future which makes present in the process of having been.”
Martin Heidegger, Being and Time (1927)
Temporality is a concept that makes us perceive a change. Heidegger argues that human being is fundamentally structured by its temporality, or its concern with, and relationship to time, existing as a structurally open “possibility-for-being.” Hyunlak Lim’s work of art reminds us of temporality that Heidegger once argued about. His artistic activity is to try to be closer to nature that has existed for a long time and find himself.
Sticking to a genre, ‘ink-and-wash painting’ that is volumetric, he has been making his world of art in various ways. ‘Trees stand’, a series of his works that has been introduced since 2000, shows us pine trees that grow in his mind that look similar to those in reality. The way he represents an object is about expressing spirituality of the object, not just about the appearance of it. It is similar to the way Korean scholars in Joseon Dynasty expressed their spirit on literary paintings. Accepting the basic concept of the traditional Korean painting, he uses his own modernistic approach, which explains why he prefers a three-dimensional space to a paper. He gets close to nature and leaves traces of breathing by making installation pieces in a space as if drawing with transparent substances, polycarbonates, and by doing a performance at the beach with clothes on which he draws with ink. After all, those kinds of action are caused from his desire to reach a state of union of the self with natural phenomena and break away from norms. He tries to feel alive and stay in the moment by making his artwork.
For I use a traditional medium, ink-and-wash painting, making a successful work of art depends on my instant response to ink. It is the same reason why I sometimes draw in charcoal instead of using ink to express the frame and the energy of a tree and its vitality. A statement about the circulation of life, ‘The burned charcoal can be born again as a tree with the aid of my hands’ makes me draw in charcoal, smear what I draw, erase it repeatedly and dream of an incarnation.
 According to the way the Buddhists measured time in the old days, a moment needed to provoke a thought was considered as the smallest unit to measure time. One thought in Buddhism was considered to be 0.018 seconds. It was also called ’90 instants’. One instant was considered as ‘the present’ while ‘before an instant’ was considered as the past and ‘after an instant’ was considered as the future. Because the thought of measuring time exactly didn’t make sense to those old Buddhists who thought that it might narrow the range of one’s thinking, the system of measuring time in the old days could not progress compared to that of the Western world.’