“Light and Line”: Hyesook Park’s Arcs of Stillness

Monday, May 15, 2017

Bowl - HSP

Hyesook Park’s current show of new and recent paintings spreads through several rooms at the Proxy Place Gallery in Chatsworth. The variety at work is exactly that: at work. One must bring an ability to shift from tone to tone in order to absorb the full intentions of any given painting. One of her paintings could be regarded as the best depiction of the enjambment at work in W.C. Williams’s “The Red Wheelbarrow.” The third pair of lines goes:

glazed with rain
water

Puddle - HyeSook

It is this enjambment that carries within its scoop the meaning of the “depends.” One can find a longer explication in my article in the William Carlos Williams Review. For the present moment, though, I would rather emphasize how Hyesook Park so deftly renders that almost unfathomably rapid transition between the state of “becoming” (symbolized by rain”) and “being” (the connotation of “water”). How can one possibly detect, let alone represent, the full import of this distinction? To keep them apart without imposing some binary of being and becoming on the perception is quite an accomplishment on her part. In fact, it seems a minor miracle that she has pulled it off and left the viewer reconciled to this simultaneity.

Puddle Up Close

Her exhibition includes several fine small and medium-sized paintings, such as “Bowl” and “Hand,” that reaffirm a seemingly archaic vision of modernity at its inception. In ignoring the allure of popular culture and social media, Hyesook Park reminds us of the rewards of a bold meditation on the “blue mountain” of one’s solitude. “Way,” for instance, depicts what might be ascertained as “satori’s swamp,” and yet the path is not lost, but glowing up from underneath as well as from some lunar source.
Way - Satori's Swamp - HSP

One painting reminds us that not all contemporary artists have surrendered to synthesizers and their equivalents. A traditional musical instrument, primarily played by women, straddles one painting, its pegs like stanchions on a bridge of melody awaiting to be plucked.

Koto Detail - HSP

SHOW: “Light and Line”
Hyesook Park
May 13-28, 2017
Proxy Place Gallery
proxyplacegallery.com
19860 Plummer Street, Chatsworth, CA 91311
Monday; Wednesday; Friday: 12 – 4 p.m.
(Saturday: appointments only)