Modern Society and Perception on Real Identity

Modern Society and Perception on Real Identity

Suh Jinsuk (Director, Alternative Space Loop)

Lee Changhoon creates his works with diverse media. He deals with topics that he wants to express by using various media such as photos, images, and installations. Communication ways and ontological anxiety of modern people are inherited in various languages used by him, which will elaborately analyze lonely individuals and inform the public of harmful effects of fetishism at the same time. He expresses issues of overcoming limitations of general spaces and human beings’ basic loneliness through two opposite words, severance and communication.

His work (between V and R,2012) covers alienation between oneself and others in social groups that members cannot help but make a relationship whether they want to communicate or not by showing the relationship between a man looking at a big advertising screen and other people who just pass by him without recognizing him. He asks himself through the work what his real identity is. Here, real identity of human beings means that some people exist in reality and they should perceive by themselves that they exist. In an individualized capitalistic modern society, human beings generally become materials and alienated. An extreme individualism that everything becomes information and technology in a modern society accelerates the situation and deprives people of a close communication between individuals and multiple different groups. Human beings become alienated due to lack of interests in and love of others and communication gap. Lee Changhoon describes alienation and anxiety owing to loss of a close personal relationship among modern people across his works. He always puts himself on borders. Putting himself on the borders between imagination and reality and between his ideal life and real life might mean him being included in both areas, not out of them. That is, he expresses an individual’s sense of emptiness and ontological sensibility at the same time to speak meaning of his real identity by detouring from an urban life of modern people.

In his recent work (1 Frame, 2011- ), images taken for a long period of time are compressed into a frame. Lots of figurative images are arranged with stories in a film but when they are compressed into a layer temporality becomes meaningless; stories are broken, and ambiguous images only remain. Then, figurative images and temporality are compressed into abstract images and moments and viewers are led to recognize the relation between them. In other words, people consider a real life, a fluid time, an immovable moment and ask many questions about reality that they face and identity.

Works of Lee Changhoon show challenges that modern people should resolve regarding severance of human relations with a critical perspective on how abundance of a modern society influences us, emptiness and anonymity behind such abundance under a paradoxical context, individualism going wrong, and effectiveness of a capitalistic society. He wants to deliver the message that we cannot help but perceive others and an indifferent ‘society,’ and ontological ‘oneself’ who has no choice but to live in such society by ourselves, not through others to us via his works.