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Kim Hankyul

Jazz by Jazz

Date: 15.05. – 14.06.20
Location: Atelier Nord, Olaf Ryes plass 2 (entrance Sofienberggata)
Opening hours: Thursday and Friday 15-18, Saturday and Sunday 13-18.

We hope to open the exhibition as planed on Thursday 14th of May, but this depends on municipal guidelines regarding limiting the spread of the corona virus.

Kim Hankyul’s kinetic sound installation Jazz by Jazz aims to reproduce the syncopated sound of jazz through mechanical movement. In music, syncopation is defined as several rhythms played simultaneously, interrupting the regular flow of the beat.

Microphones are attached to different parts of several sculptural mechanisms, allowing sound to be amplified throughout the gallery space. Water condenses on a hot plate, causing a hissing sound; an actuator spins between two microphones, resulting in reverberating bass. A water dispenser drips onto a microphone enveloped in plastic, creating regular, fast-paced percussion. In another part of the installation, rhythmic percussion is created by water droplets hitting two metal bowls, suspended at different heights.

Conceptually, Kim’s entirely mechanized and automatic jazz band is based on a what he calls “abstract dysfunction”. Imperfections in each mechanism allow the rhythm of the soundscape to flow in and out of sync at random in real-time, thereby reproducing the unpredictable, syncopated rhythms of live improvised jazz. In conventional thinking, mechanical processes should be as predictable and clockwork-like possible, thereby avoiding “bad” outcomes such as disproportionate wear on certain parts or stoppages in production processes. Instead, Kim’s work focuses on factors such as erroneous movement and sound, loss of systematic control and unpredictability as creative forces rather than indications of failure.

Kim Hankyul is a South Korean artist living and working in Bergen, Norway. Kim’s sound installations typically produce sound through motor movement of wooden materials. By juxtaposing mechanical power and sonic vulnerability, Kim interrogates the routine violence of everyday activities. Recently, Kim’s work has been shown at Bergen Kunsthall (2019), Bergen senter for elektronisk kunst (2019), Radio Space: Borealis (2019), Lydgalleriet (2019), Landmark (2019), Galleri Slakt (2019), Doosan Art Center Seoul (2018) and Unofficial Preview Gallery Seoul (2017).

Special thanks to Johan Mattias Arvastsson for technical help and Nordisk Kunstnarsenter Dale for their residency program.

Jazz by Jazz is the result of Atelier Nord’s annual Open Call; the project was selected from a total of 66 applications.