hyungmin MOON

The artistic practice of Hyungmin Moon cannot be defined by one genre as it encompasses various fields from painting, photograph, installation, and sculpture to video art. Though it isn’t new that an artist works in different genres, retaining the characteristics of his or her own style throughout the whole practice is unusual. Hyungmin Moon is one of those artists who are keeping his balance in two different qualities, and this is possible as he works within a common pattern of ‘contradiction between form and content’ and ‘black humor’.

The theme of ‘contradiction between form and content’ is a basic element in his work. Reflecting virtues required in each genre, well painted pictures and sophisticated photographs of neat composition are the elements drawing viewer’s attention. But the stories that each work contains is demanding or complicated. As he says he is not painting but ‘producing’ a painting, each work captures disparate or unexpected stories rather than validating formal traits of each genre. Like an identity of contemporary art, a range of contents unattainable just by looking at the surface of the work, is created through common process of research and module system, talking back as they continuously collide with images behind images. In this sense, his practice is meta-contemporary art and conceptual art.   
Another important quality of Hyungmin Moon’s practice is black humor. Despite the fact that he is not judging values or taking critical position, black humor of which is produced in the process of maximizing the ‘contradiction between form and content’ makes the viewers question fundamental aspects of situations revealed as a result of discrepancy between image and contents that they are watching. Hence his black humor calls attention to social regulations and conventional notions upon which general public follow unconsciously. It is the responsibility of the viewer to read what’s behind the image or the bitter humor of the artist. The artist is simply asking the feelings and thoughts regarding his work and existing situations. 

As previously stated, while the ‘contradiction between form and content’, black humor resulting from that, and questioning viewers are basic rules to understand Hyungmin Moon’s work, it should be done within the context of bigger prospect. This is the reason that he is not satisfied with individual work but does varied body of series works. He acknowledges that a work of art can be interpreted in so many ways depending on the situation and the time as if putting the puzzle together. That is why the meaning of his work is always fluid and can be translated anew.

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