The Performance „Conjugative Literacy” von John SH LEE is taking place in the context of the exhibition “How do we speak? A repertoire of language.”
The work of John Seung-Hwan Lee focuses on the idea that time is not a linear progression, as well as on how our history is shaped through different levels of politics, both daily and systemic.
Lee was born in the US and grew up in South Korea with Korean as his native language. He moved back to the US as a teenager, during which time he concerned himself with national and cultural identity. Through his experience with hegemonic English, he became more interested in his native language and the notion of body and language as a home. His work originates from his experience in breaking (dance), calligraphy, critical theory, and practice, as well as translation. It also conveys his interest in the opacity of language (spoken, written, kinetic, visual), modern history relating to the
Korean region, and cultural and linguistic differences between North and South Korea. Kinetic scripting and drawing, as well as interventionist undertakings, form the core of Lee’s creative practice.
For “How Do We Speak? A Repertoire of Language”, Lee continues his Conjugative Literacy series to explore an average translation process by transcribing a Korean podcast about modern Western philosophy using an exercise influenced by breaking (dancing) in which he works with the existing architecture of the space. What remains in the space are the drawings of his body, which are a reference to both his poetic and abstract movement of transcribing language, using the body as a tool to activate space and words.