The Shape of Time is the first major exhibition of contemporary Korean art at a US museum in more than a decade. The work in the exhibition supports the curatorial premise that the current global moment can be understood as the product of multiple co-existing pasts, presents, and futures. Nearly forty artists, all born between 1960 and 1986, represent a generation that experienced rapid social and economic change, as South Korea transitioned from a totalitarian regime to a constitutional democracy. The Shape of Time includes work in a range of mediums that reflects this period of accelerated transformation and the impact it has had on the material and intellectual life of Koreans.
The exhibition and catalog will be organized according to themes that mark significant changes in modern Korea: Transition, Tension, Displacement, Conformity, Feminist Resurgence, and Alternative Belief Systems. The work in each section offers a response to that which has come before, providing a nuanced look at the complicated relationship contemporary artists have with the methods, traditions, and aesthetic and political decisions of the past. The exhibition is co-curated by Elisabeth Agro and Hyunsun Woo,