Fallen Star (Lone Star Version) presents two chapters from a larger sculptural narrative, The Speculation Projects. Detailing a hypothetical account of his move from Korea to the United States,Wind of Destiny and A New Beginning also provide glimpses, for the first time, into the artist’s working process. A partition, tools, scraps, and photo-documents compose a personal workshop-turned-installation, displaying Suh’s past and future.
Wind of Destiny, an eight-foot-high Styrofoam tornado, rears up from the floor just past the partition’s doorway. A model of Suh’s childhood house perches perilously on top, illustrating the narrative moment in which Suh and his Korean home are sucked from their roots to rest uncertainly on a moving column of sky. A nod to Dorothy’s infamous displacement, Suh’s gust also suggests the Korean concept of Inyeon, or fate. Suh’s direction has shifted. His new path, like his work, is carved by pre-destiny, will, or the accumulation of both.
Suh’s twister, having traversed the Pacific, shipwrecks the artist and his house into an apartment building to form A New Beginning. A larger than dollhouse-sized mock-up depicts the Korean home sinking into the side of Suh’s first United States residence in Providence, RI. Establishing an unstable symbiosis, the collision also strands Suh on a sculptural and metaphorical island. Culturally isolated, he survives by founding his life’s work, the ongoing fabrication of model supports and life-size structures that bridge his two worlds.
Fallen Star builds a story animated not just by climatic moments, but also through continuous making. By realizing models and model-making as finished works, Suh keeps his sculptures, and himself, on the plane of ideas: speculative and migratory.
-Kurt Dominick Mueller
Graduate Curatorial Intern