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gallery exhibition

Do Ho Suh

September 7 – October 7, 2000
39 Greene Street, New York

New York Times

Do-Ho Suh
Lehmann Maupin
Through Oct. 7


Do-Ho Suh, Korean-born and with a graduate degree in sculpture from Yale, made a memorable contribution to "Greater New York" at P.S. 1 1ast spring: a full-size house sewn of celadon-green fabric and suspended from the ceiling like an open parachute. He has included a smaller example of stitched architectureóa closet-size bathroomó in his New York solo debut, but he concentrates on radically reduced versions of the human form.

In the main gallery a section of the floor has been replaced by sheets of clear glass under which stand thousands of tiny plastic figures pushing upward against the surface, as if both supporting it and trying to prevent it from crushing them. A wall of the gallery is covered with sheets of paper printed in a fine dot pattern: each dot is a photographic portrait ó some of them of Mr. Suh's fellow students, others of strangersóreduced to pinpoint size.

The subject of the individual adhering to or resisting established norms recurs in the contemporary art of Korea, where social conformity is rewarded and bucking the system invites reprisals like the suppression of student movements. By eliminating specific cultural references Mr. Suh puts the whole question in a broader context in this show and does so with wit and skill. But it is the poetic image of last spring's floating architecture that still stays most clearly in the mind.