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REVIEWArtist Project, Pop-Up Lab
Kyungyoon Seo, CUB Reporter | 승인 2017.12.21 14:00|(259호)

Do you like art? What about science?


  If you like both, how about going to the Pop-Up Lab in the Daejeon Creative Center? Thanks to collaboration with the Institute for Basic Science, three scientists and one mathematician have participated in this exhibition. Seven artists’ works consist of science themes as well. Through this exhibition, you can catch up with the current trends of science as well as art. The Pop-Up in the exhibition title was derived from the concept of a pop up store, which is a place where people sell specific goods for a short period of time and then disappear. Pop up stores can effectively monitor customer’s responses. Just like a pop up store, the Pop-Up Lab considers the entire process of a viewer’s appreciation of the exhibition but provides only minimal information. In this exhibition, an artwork’s name and an explanation of the artwork are not provided. Additionally, the content in the pamphlet for the exhibition is hidden by an opaque covering. Thus, to enjoy the exhibition, you have to guess whether an artwork is an artist’s or a scientist’s. You can check the correct answers by scratching off the opaque covering with a coin. Through this unique process, not only can you actively participate in the exhibition, you can also think more about the boundaries of science and art.

  The exhibition is divided into three parts: The Micro-Senses Lab, the Cognitive Science Lab, and the Botany Lab. If you are not familiar with science studies, you might not know what these studies are. But, do not worry. There are detailed explanations about each scientific term in the pamphlet, which will help you to understand.


1st lab: Micro-Senses Lab

  We look, hear, taste, smell, and feel every day. We have only understood a tiny fraction of the world of senses before. But as science technology develops, we can see more things we have not seen before, such as atoms. Micro-sensitive study is a new field of science that helps us to learn more about what we have not felt before. In this laboratory, you can see works that visualize things that are hard to see with one’s eyes.


2nd lab: Cognitive Science Lab

  Cognition is the mental process by which information or a stimulus is accepted and stored. It is also a study that tries to classify learning, reasoning, language, problem solving, and the nature of intelligence systems scientifically. In this laboratory, you can see works about how we perceive and interact with other people and things.


3rd lab: Botany Lab

  Botany is the comprehensive scientific study of plants, including plant structure, shape, growth, metabolism, and evolution. Botany, through which practical goals such as distinguishing a poisonous plant from a medicinal herb began to be accomplished, has contributed greatly to understanding life. In this section, we can see works illustrating the perspectives of the plants, which we have not thought about before.


Picture 1: A Boy and His Atom 

  This is the world’s smallest movie, made by Andreas Heinrich and other IBM researchers. It holds the Guinness World Records title for being the world’s smallest stop-motion film. It features atoms magnified over 100 million times. They moved atoms frame by frame, and made a simple story about a boy falling in love with an atom, dancing and playing together.



Picture 2: XY-SA 0900

  In this installation, made by Ipi Shin, you can see three Petri dishes. If you look closer into a Petri dish, you can see a person performing actions like stomping, cartwheeling, or crawling. You can watch human actions by looking into Petri dishes as if to examine cells in the laboratory.




Picture 3: Bokaisen Incubator

  The artwork made by Jaeyoung Park looks like a real science lab with unusual machines. In the middle of the machines, you can see an unknown creature, Bokaisen, sleeping in an incubator. It is made to look so realistic that you can see the animal breathing in and out. The Bokaisen is a fictional animal created by the artist. Through the fictional but realistic animal Bokaisen, Jaeyoung Park makes us question the trustworthiness of human consciousness.


Picture 4: New Co-Existence System: Ingredient Test

  Involving two artists, Subin Seo and Inhui Jang, the Sojang Kim Laboratory shows us that we humans need to know the present state of our ecosystem which is changing, yet this is hardly noticed. The blood pack around the plant means the circular loop enabling life and life phenomena.




Plus Points

  People who do not know much about science can understand scientific theories easily thanks to the detailed explanations given in the pamphlet. The interesting works displayed in the exhibition also stimulate intellectual curiosity among those who do not know science well. Furthermore, by not initially providing information, people can participate and think about the boundaries between science and art actively rather than accept them passively.


Negative Points

  Even though it is the exhibition’s concept to provide minimal information about the artwork, I wish there were more information about the artwork on display. Information on the artwork was hard to find on the Internet even though I was craving so much to find it. I hoped that they would provide me with information about the artwork on the way out.


Exhibit Info:

Where: Daejeon Creative Center

When: 2017.09.15 (Friday) ~ 2017.12.17 (Sunday)

Entrance Fee: Free

Exhibit hours: March ~ October: 10:00~19:00 / November ~ February: 10:00 ~ 18:00

Tel: 042-120/ 270-7390, 270-7343, 270-7314


Fun Fact 

  Did you know that the Daejeon Creative Center was not a gallery at first? Actually, it was first made as a public office building in 1958. It was empty from 1999 as the provincial government relocated to another place, and since 2008, it has been used as the Daejeon Art Center. This building was designed by the architect Hangu Bae, who shows the trend of modern architecture in Korea, influenced by the Western functionalist architecture of the mid-20th century. It was selected as one of the 40 Best Buildings of Daejeon City’ in 1999, and was designated as the one-hundredth registered cultural property in 2004. The main entrance is arch shaped and a square frame is installed on the exterior of the building, giving the impression of seeing abstract works of art. If you visit the Daejeon Creative Center, pay attention to the details of the building as well as the exhibition inside!

Kyungyoon Seo, CUB Reporter  becky2009@cnu.ac.kr

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