As seen in Plato’s allegory of the cave, all of us are constantly caught between fictions and realities, battling on the thin line between pleasure and pain.
“Wozu” is a series that shows the states of inner collision among scared egos –individuals that want to look away from the truth and who, despite the clamor of voices around them, remain largely silent.
In an endless circle of life and death—born in and cross the water to breathe his last breath—Man has been searching for the reasons for existence and resisted the world and self-made limitations.
The water in this project represents the death of the physical body, and at the same time, of the soul driven to despair. The peaceful but violent attribute of water is very similar to that of the human being, I articulate the collision between egos through the mix of water and the human body.
Humans are often depicted as fruits fallen off the trees in the Norse mythology. Likewise, the story of Tower of Babel, in which the tower is reminiscent of a tall tree, describes a human challenge against God as well as a desperate struggle to climb the tower to find the origin.
Human beings originate from confusion. And they are destined to pursue ontological questions until they reach death. Maybe, those continuous questions might find meaning in our existence in daily life. We are still imperfect and living together floating in a world of chaos.
This series originated in the bizarre and mystic image of myself reflected in the water. These sentences, written right after sudden awaken from sleep, opened the starting point of my work.
“Wozu” is a german word which means “what for”
I reflected myself in water
and there was a stranger.
I wish he disappeared tomorrow.
Dongwook Lee was born in 1973 in South Korea and lives and works in Paju, South Korea. He graduated Hankuk University of Foreign Studies, majoring in Chinese. A self-taught photographer until his mid-30s, he has worked for numerous fashion magazines and commercial brands.
As an exhibiting artist, his works have been shown in South Korea, Bulgaria, Japan, Italia, England, United States Of America, and has received awards from around the world. He has focused his lens on the inner collision of human beings.
Inspired by his sister who is a painter, some of his compositions have a painting like quality. From his start in from photography, he has gradually expanded his art to making videos and sculptures.
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