Ran Hwang’s oversized installations are intricate and poetic. From far, they transforms into a Buddha, a temple, a chandelier or a bird. When you look closely, you get surprised by the extreme level of detail in her work and the unusual materials. The artist nails thousands of pins and buttons, using these as pixels on a screen which creates mind-boggling silhouetted images.
“My immense wall installations are extremely time consuming and repetitive manual work. This is a form of meditative practice that helps me find my inner peace.”
Ran Hwang sees her work as a form of performance that leads to finding oneself. She hammers her spins on the wall like monks practicing Zen. That sense of peace is conveyed in her artwork, which invites the viewer to attempt to reach the state of fulfillment promoted by Buddhist philosophy.
Pins are often used to hold buttons onto the surface to form an image. The artist uses buttons because they are common and ordinary, like the existence of human beings. No adhesive is used so the buttons are free to stay and move, which implies the genetic human tendency to be irresolute. In other works, a massive number of pins connect yards of thread suggesting connections between human beings and a communication network between seemingly unlinked human experiences.
Ran Hwang is a Korean-born artist working in New York and Seoul. She graduated from the School of Visual Arts in NYC. She has exhibited her work at several international institutions including the Queens Museum of Art, New York; the Chelsea Art Museum, New York; the Seoul Art Center Museum; and the Jeju Museum of Art, Jeju Island. Her work is also a part of numerous private and public collections including the National Museum of Contemporary Art, Seoul; the Hammond Museum, North Salem, New York; and the Ritz-Carlton Hotel, Hong Kong.