Do Ho Suh, Tracing Time, Modern One, Edinburgh

I hadn’t even heard of the Korean artist Do Ho Suh when I saw the posters advertising his Tracing Time exhibition at Modern One in Edinburgh, and I must admit that the artwork on the poster didn’t really enthrall me, so I was agreeably surprised when we went along to view the exhibition – and I was quite impressed.

Do Ho Suh, Modern One, Edinburgh, Art

He obviously has a thing about homes/houses. He grew up in an old house, unlike his schoolmates.

Do Ho Suh, Modern One, Edinburgh, Art

The gallery’s website says, ‘The exhibition presents the artist’s complex and compelling thread drawings – in which cotton thread is embedded in handmade paper – alongside architectural rubbings, paper sculptures, cyanotypes, printmaking and watercolours.’

However, I think that the artist draws his designs and the sends them to someone else to transfer the drawing into a much bigger artwork,, and they embed the cotton thread into special paper, although looking closely I thought some of the thread had been machine stitched on.  It all looks very delicate.

Do Ho Suh , Do Ho Suh, Modern One, Edinburgh, Art

I know I’m too nit-picking about artists as even hundreds of years ago the famous ones were employing apprentices to do a lot of the work which was then passed off as Rembrandt’s or whoever. Damien Hirst seems to do very little of the dirty work himself if any. I can’t say that I really understand it because if I were them I would want to feel that sense of achievement from creating something myself.

Do Ho Suh , Modern One, Edinburgh, Art


Do Ho Suh , Modern One, Edinburgh, Art

The photo below is of the ‘house’  which appeared on the promotional poster which I saw, you can walk through the structure which has been created from what looks like knitted/woven nylon mesh, complete with the door, 3-D door handle shapes and including other fixtures in a home such as an electrical socket and a fire alarm. You have to leave any bags you might be carrying outside the structure, so that there is no danger of you snagging anything on the fabric. I think it would be just like a pair of tights if you did do that, but then most homes do have a ladder in them somewhere!

Do Ho Suh , Modern One, Edinburgh, Art

The exhibition is on until 1st September.

4 thoughts on “Do Ho Suh, Tracing Time, Modern One, Edinburgh

  1. Thank you for another informative post that brought back many memories. The first two images, and the comment about the artist living in an old house, reminded me of a similar house in Japan, not Korea.

    I was looking for temporary accommodation and a friend told me that her in-laws were planning to demolish their dilapidated house and cooperate with a real estate developer in building a condominium, with one floor reserved for the family. The only problem was that the family’s spiritual advisor warned them that they’d be unhappy in the new building unless they first moved due east for at least one year. Which is how I got to live in their house for a nominal rent.

    It was in a dreadful state, with holes in the bathroom wall through which frogs would often crawl. What I didn’t know until much later is that the house used to be the home of a Japanese artist called Yokoyama Taikan, famous enough to merit an entry in Wikipedia.

    • Janusz,
      Well you have definitely been around! I could do without the frogs, but I suppose it could have been worse. I wonder if the Japanese family did feel happy in their new place when it was finished. Thanks for the mention of Yokoyama Taikan. I looked him up, some of his artwork is lovely although quite traditional.

  2. Hi Katrina,
    If you are a professional artist, I don’t think it is unreasonable to contract out some of the mundane work to achieve an end product; as you say, it has been done for centuries, and the apprentices get the experience (or the subcontractors the pay!).
    Our small family company makes control systems, which we design, program and install. We contract out much of the physical building of the hardware, but when the system is installed in a factory and the machine being controlled springs into action, there is still immense satisfaction of being the creator. So I can well imagine the Damien Hursts of this world still getting a sense of satisfaction from seeing their ideas come to fruition.

    • Janet,
      That’s so interesting, I hadn’t thought of it from the industrial angle. I think I’m quite hands on with things, so I would hate someone else even coming in to do work in my garden, even although I could probably do with some help nowadays!

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