I Squared Gallery Exhibition Award for excellence in drawing-based practices:

ADORATION: DROWNING INTO THE PAST. This practice involves a process of a gradual transition from affection to an attachment, ultimately an obsession. The symbolic space, objects, and colour repeat and increase continuously as the series progresses. The object in the painting reminds us of many people’s childhoods and the odd obsession we had in childhood that we couldn’t understand as we grew up. The objects and colour connect each painting into one and create an unnatural space. Moreover, displaying all the images on each wall creates the discomfort of being surrounded by teddy bears and experiencing comfort inside distress. Also, the flatness and ambiguity of the face of the teddy bear make the audience assume the emotions they feel through their memory and thoughts.

Adoration: Drowning in the Past is a series of teddy bear paintings exploring childhood, love, and lingering feelings towards the past. This project grew out of my curiosity about why I started to collect teddy bears and that I do not need my teddy bear to be with me even when I am far away from home. This painting captures the essence of my past and present. The surroundings of the painting portray my past, and the situation is recreated surrealistically, and the teddy bear represents who I am in the present. The teddy bear has to play the past positions and reexperience the obsession and lingering emotion I had in childhood.

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Woo Hyun Kang