Time, change, intent and material are central elements in the work of Eunjung Choi. The Korean artist’s densely layered paper constructions are currently on exhibition at Able Fine Art Gallery in Chelsea.
Choi’s paper pieces combine elements of both two-dimensional and three-dimensional art; she creates bas-relief abstract compositions that hang on the wall. Her work, created by meticulous and time-consuming layering of tightly folded newspaper, refers back to a long history of Asian folded paper art that includes Japanese Origami, Chinese Zhezhi and Korean Jong-ie-jeop-gi. Yet, this contemporary work adds layers of meaning as well as layers of material, as she incorporates the idea of repurposing and reusing. By choosing to build her pieces from folded newspaper and creating elemental, earthy, biomorphic shapes and forms, Choi reminds the viewer of the present very real necessity to preserve. And in them, she both preserves and presents many meanings.
These elegant, powerful pieces present a fluidity of line that belies the solidity of the form. The titles of the works reference time, and indeed, their production is part of their statement. Like sedimentary rock built through ages, these sculptures exist only through the time, the work and the intent Choi exerts. The texts of the newspapers, the messages that were once conveyed, are lost to time, as are many of the bits of archeological evidence, when life yields itself and metamorphosizes into rock. And, as with coal which over time becomes compressed into diamonds, so it is with the paper work of Eunjung Choi. The simple, common material is transformed into an object of beauty and significance.