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KOH SANG WOO
(B. 1978)
Conversation; & What Light Dreams When the Sun is in Love
Conversation: signed 'Koh Koh Sang Woo' in English; numbered and dated '1/3 2009' (on the reverse)
What Light Dreams When the Sun is in Love: signed 'Koh' in English; numbered and dated '2/5 2009' (on the reverse)
two archival digital prints on diasec
175.3 x 122 cm. (69 x 48 in.); 111.4 x 161.8 cm. (43 7/8 x 63 3/4 in.) (2)
edition 1/3; 2/5
Executed in 2009 (2)
Literature
Gallery Sun Contemporary, Koh Sang Woo, exh. cat., Seoul, Korea, 2009 (different edition of What Light Dreams When the Sun is in Love illustrated, pp. 13-14).
SAMSUNG CAMERATA, Vol. 1, Seoul, Korea, 2009 (different edition of What Light Dreams When the Sun is in Love illustrated, pp. 15-18)
'Artist meets brand', Bar & Dining Magazine, Seoul, Korea, 2009 (different edition of What Light Dreams When the Sun is in Love illustrated, unpaged)

Exhibited
Seoul, Korea, Seoul Station, Seoul International Photography Festival, 1 December 2008-31 January 2009 (different edition of Conversation exhibited).
Seoul, Korea, Gallery Sun Contemporary, Koh Sang Woo, 6-28 February 2009. (Conversation exhibited, different edition of What Light Dreams When the Sun is in Love exhibited).
New York, USA, Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, SCOPE New York, 3-7 March 2009 (different edition of What Light Dreams When the Sun is in Love exhibited).

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Lot Essay

Koh Sang Woo diverged from traditional photography to explore the potential of the camera to express emotions behind the surfact of a conventional image. Through inverting the positive and negative of the image and tactfully arranging its colors, space is inverted, and the real feelings hidden under an image are captured instead. Koh turns black into white and red into green, and displays the intrinsic consciousness on the photograph. Exploring "Love" as his main theme in the past ten years, Koh has combined the techniques of photography and drama into his works, producing a series of "visual hymns" for the audience to contemplate on the real significance and value of love.

Self Portrait #7; & The Chaser (Lot 1694) in this sale are earlier works of the artist. In displaying themes such as "relationship" and "intrinsic beauty" in his work, Koh shows the modern misinterpretation of love. Koh believes that sometimes we forget that "love is unconditional, uncountable, and is the appreciation of intrinsic beauty." In The Chaser, the use of unifying deep blue, fluorescent pink and sharp orange connects the three main characters and signifies their ambiguous tripartite relationship. The artist empties out the souls of the characters in the scene by exposing their bodies bare and using the inverted blue to emphasize the mood of apathy. The bright, neon headdresses and sunglasses suggest a sense of artifice and unnatural beauty, as the characters shield their gazes and dress in disguise. The colours that emphasize the curled up hair, red lipstick and extravagant dresses of the three female models in Self Portrait #7 seem to ridicule women who blindly conceal their natural appearance with with artifice and makeup. If one does not carefully study the shape of the hands, we will pass by the fact that one of the models is in fact a man who, unexpectedly, is Koh Sang Woo himself.

Conversation; & What Light Dreams When the Sun is in Love (Lot 1693) are more recent works of Koh. He first paints patterns on the couple and then inverses the image. Two pairs of lovers embrace passionately in the dark, snuggling close to each other's bodies of bluish green colours. The bright purple and orange hair colour creates a painterly quality in the ethereal and dreamlike image. In Conversation, Koh redefines "intimacy" through his own understanding and interpretation of colour. Coupled together under the dreamy, pastel light of the atmospheric scene, the lovers entangled in each other's arms illustrates the meaning of real intimacy and communication of love through their embraces. What Light Dreams When the Sun is in Love describes a highly metaphorical scene of how one only sees love in the other person that they embrace. The relationship between the characters poetically portrays lovers who are blinded by love, when one is like a butterfly naturally mesmerized by the flower they graze.

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