"Stone is the backbone holding up the world"
April 28, 2016, New York, NY: Benoist F. Drut and Gerard Widdershoven have announ-ced the exhibition, Quiet Profundity: The Work of Yongjin Han, a retrospective of works from the private collection of the Korean master sculptor and stone carver. The show opens Wednesday, June 22nd and runs through August 16th at Maison Gerard New York, 53 East 10th Street. Recognized as a central and celebrated figure in the field of Korean contemporary sculpture, Han is one of the early explorers in Kore-an abstract sculpture in the tradition of Constantin Brancusi, and is a pioneer in transforming Korea's tradition of direct stone carving into refined abstraction.
Yongjin Han (b. 1934, Seoul, South Korea) works alone as a stone sculptor using traditional hand tools and carving meth-ods. His stone pieces explore the theme of harmonizing with nature. He believes that each stone has its own history, char-acter, and energy. It is Han's task to sense that energy and draw out its visi-ble form. He engages with the stone as an equal - being "one with" it as fellow travelers through time and space. Like wa-yfarers meeting on a path, Han and a stone spend time together as friends for a stretch - and when they part, both are marked and changed forever. Maison Gerard will recreate the artist's studio to contextualize the work and offer a person-al perspective of the artist's process.
Han, when describing his work, comments, "As stone has been around since the begin-ning of time, it has much to teach us if we care to slow down and listen." He hopes that in the end, the stones marked by this process can bring experiences of peace, joy, and encouragement to viewers. His has a deep respect for stone coupled with a playful selflessness in "conversing" with them. "The stone tells me it has an itch in a certain spot, so I scratch it - and we both feel better!" he laughs.
Yongjin Han's career has spanned decades and continents with several prestigious large-scale public commissions. His works are in museums and private collections worldwide, including the National Museum of Contemporary Art, Seoul; IE Young Museum of Contemporary Art, Seoul; Posong High School, Seoul; Smart Museum of Art, University of Chicago; and the Sculpture Park at City Hall, Redding, CA. Han is also well-known for exhibiting and working with Nam June Paik, the celebrated video artist. Yongjin Han will exhibit a spec-tacular collection of wood and stone pieces at Maison Gerard, never before seen by the public.