I express things that I couldn't express easily in words freely and comfortably through paintings. The environments surrounding me constantly stimulate me and accumulated in me with each unique signal system. Numerous stimuli, memories, and various desires are converted into emotional feelings and energy in the inner consciousness by reacting with perceptual actions such as my values, emotions, and thinking system. Expressing this feeling and energy in various colors and rhythmic lines, I tried to express myself honestly and actively. It is a kind of performance and play. I experienced the unintended “ACCIDENTAL” charm when I left my body and mind to the canvas and expressed it freely, following the inner dynamics that occur at every moment. This work is an experiment in which aesthetic shapes are created with traces of color harmony or behavior, regardless of any subject matter or specific theme. In experiments, sometimes the object becomes the reversed owner, and the work itself leads me to the world of exploration on canvas. In my paintings like this, traces of my actions remain intact, creating a lively interaction with other people appreciating the paintings. Painting is the language that expresses me as an act of sharing and communicating with the world while living in the world.




A Landscape floating between the retina and the subject

Yu Geun-oh (Art Critic)

"The Universe (which others call the library) is composed of an indefinite, perhaps infinite number of hexagonal galleries."
( Jorge Luis Borges ) 『The Library of Babel』

In Cho Wonjeong's painting, the other side of the canvas may be either the land horizon or the sea horizon, perhaps this world or nirvana, but nonetheless, is considered somewhere very close. That is the term made because it is familiar, but there are no features that can be defined as something. Usually, art history refers to this type of painting as lyrical abstracts. The artist painted something passionately. It can be the artist's inner side, nature, or some phenomenon. So it's not wrong for the viewer to find something specific on the canvas. The meaning and interpretation of what appears on the canvas are entirely open to the viewer. Furthermore, this is because not only can there be no way to prevent Pareidolia, a psychological phenomenon in which each viewer extracts a certain type from a subject that has no connection to each other, but it can also have a morphology and color that are not so familiar to the canvas. Some may feel the surface of a lake and dry water grass from the background of the pale green and brown lines, and some may feel the fresh air of dawn on a canvas consisting of the blueish background and a few lines. Cho's painting starts with a question about how abstracts are reproduced in art (here, reproduction functions in various ways). Cho’s work does not depict the subject itself, but depicts a floating image that doesn’t settle between the retina and the subject. This analysis is a very conceptual reasoning, but it is intended to capture any image floating in space, suggesting the potential pattern of the subject, the variability, and, more importantly, visual and perceptual skepticism about the existing entity.

Looking at Cho's latest work from a point of view of reproduction, it is also true that the lack of concrete features sometimes makes one wonder if the artist even has any interest in a particular subject. Of course, Cho has been painting certain objects or landscapes since the early days as an artist: for example, landscapes or flowers such as a market alley, forsythia, and sunflowers. Perhaps, the abstraction in Cho's work does not emerged all of a sudden, but is backed up by the preliminary work in the previous pieces to a considerable extent. The artist refrained from saying what she wanted to say, recorded the impression she received from the subject, and has only depicted the quintessence. However, it is not easy to tell what the current interpretation means to the viewer. Perhaps after Descartes, who called out, "To be a rational being, distrust your senses," the artist might have realized that realism is a form in which one only realizes uncertainty in the subject while trying to define it rationally and accurately. But the real intention of aesthetic codes to declare an end to something, including abstraction, is the methodology of restoring and extending the endangered forms. In any case, the point Cho is aiming for is somewhere between the main agent and the subject. Just as artists often share confidence and skepticism in their works, Cho, too, is not focusing on either the main agent or the subject perhaps because it is not clear at the moment (it can also be seen that confidence and skepticism have recently become the issue of new work that have been erased and added). In a way, objects and images may be separate issues in painting, but the artist does not deny that images are dependent and indicative on the subject that produced them. As her painting suggests, she paints a phenomenon that is entirely correlated with the image of the subject. Thus, an image is recognized as a medium between the subject and the retina, and the uncertainty and obscurity it possesses are becoming the de facto subject of the painting. Cho's painting thus transcends the realm of semi-abstraction or semi-conception, where so-called conception and abstraction are mixed although it maintains a delicate rivalry between the main agent and the subject. Cho's work is also seen as a case of expanding the recognition area of images that only stay in a fixed instant capture of the subject through the dismantling of the realistic forms.

If so, the images in Cho's painting, although abstract, are paradoxically a more realistic representation of the reality of the phenomenon at the same time. If the realist painters sought constant exploration in search of clarity of things, Cho rather seeks to find a world of images accumulated in obscurity. This suggests that the intention to avoid attitudes to objects and to the world that have been based on a cognitive analysis to date was being preceded by a desire to reconsider the reproduction of an image world, such as relative analogy. The term “reproduction” feels deeply unfamiliar in abstraction, unlike in realism. Nevertheless, Cho reproduces abstraction. That it is expressed as reproduction indicates a change in the fixed perception system of the reproduction painting although it is also because the origin of the sensation is due in part to the natural landscape. As mentioned, it is not strange for the lyrical senses revealed in Cho's work to contain certain form images. For this reason, whether it is this or that side of the form means nothing to Cho. She increasingly redoubles the ambiguity in her recent work, which paid attention to the colorful sensation that touches the skin vividly. Besides, it is very impulsive and expressive. Given this aspect, it is unlikely that we would err if we related her work to abstract expressionism. If previous abstraction or abstract expressionism were not quests for any subjects, but rather reflected questions about the reasons of the main agent painting, Cho's painting in this referent seems to occupy a different position. That does not mean that the artist focuses on the material properties of the medium though. It is concerned with the heavy breathing of expressionism. Such breathing, or energy, is not intended to adequately portray the nature collected in the artist's daily life, but rather to express how to draw it out of the body with her own media senses.

It seems to be taking issue with time of the present rather than the space in painting. How can you define the present? Can you really perceive it? Is it just one of those moments of transition from the past to the future that you can't detect? It is an exquisite combination of peculiar boundaries of eternity and moments as it will always exist throughout the course of time. After all, the subject the artist encountered was not a single point in time, but the object/place that each time existed. Therefore, it is a belief that there is no absolute form that is solidified. In a way, as in any painting, even if the artist does not insist, it is the psychological landscape created when self-generated form and external form are merged. Here an “indefinite number, or perhaps an infinite number” of landscapes will be created as much as the number of the viewers. At this point, what she paints needs not be flowers, trees, water, or forests. The canvas is simply a place where images are shown to convey meaning borrowing forms and to express the images of reasoning through the body. Furthermore, she says that she borrows Merleau-Ponty’s physical phenomenology system, which refers to a "human as a body" to replace the rational entity of the modern era, and instantly puts the intrinsic presentness of the impression she remembered as a "body" on the canvas. The impression was not extracted from the subject by the artist, but provided by the subject. Thus, the image becomes blurred. This is because the diverse and unfamiliar sensory experiences that the subject conveys now cannot be described as an objective proposition or portrayed as a completely subjective impression.

The vague image originated from a wave of passion rising from beneath the body. Raging drawing and coloring that seems to try to grasp the sensory present is no other than, as the artist himself confessed, the artist's struggle to “put the true feelings and emotions of the moment that have just been created on the canvas meticulously.” But it's not a struggle of pain, but a "play of painting” or "performance of amusement" that encounters the unknown world. The artist called it an interesting communication, but it is more like a correspondence. It is an interlocking relationship in which when the subject provides something, the artist responds to it, and conversely, when the artist is in a sad mood, the subject sheds tears. The artist self-analyzes that “rather than giving form to the subject as it is, she experiences natural gestures and excitement spring up when moving the brush as the body and mind lead in pursuit of the inspiration that nature conveys, and it is sometimes an inversed relationship.” For example, it is not about placing nature in the artist's own context of work, but rather it is close to listening to what the subject says. Also, "seeing" is the act of recognizing things through the retina in the form and color of things that light transmits. The artist not only sees that things she perceives may not be the same as what others perceive, but also that there may be differences depending on her own emotional state. For example, the yellow of the bright forsythia is a yellow ribbon waiting for the children of the Sewol ferry to return, and the light pink of the colorful cherry blossom on a spring day may appear to be the color of sadness and frustration at the same time. Is there anything in the world that stays always the same?! Can you clearly define what it really is?! Some say, “Don't stay in any truth. Do not build a house there, considering it only as a tent for a summer night.” This is said with the relativity and liquidity of truth in mind.

In addition, the term “an absolute or objective image” is not appropriate because painting itself is an act of separating a situation from a certain time and space, namely an act of making a sensory choice, which inevitably requires the artist's artificial intervention, or "excluding." Therefore, the images Cho has painted are not something concrete, but something that looks like a thing or not, or something that reflects the artist's inner self. In her recent works, Cho's inner gaze largely maintains a microcosmic view. The sudden physical appearance of the lines running through the body along with the colors does not clearly reveal any specificity or physical presence. The images formed by these lines and colors are a way of keeping the viewer's focus in the gray area of the visible and non-visual. Cho's painting induces the viewers to extend the microscopic perspective to recognize different macroscopic shapes. Looking close from the viewer's point of view, the subject's ambiguity may become a fantasy. And the speed and elegant colors that make you sense the artist’s breathing play the role of amplifying this fantasy. Furthermore, the psychological fantasy, accompanied by ambiguity, reveals a different level of aesthetic sensibility from the existing paintings. What Cho's work suggests to the viewer is that it discovers the hidden forms of the landscape and in the process re-recognizes the distance between the subjects, in other words the fact that there is a time/visual deviation in perceiving the subject. It is meaningful that the changed image of nature, which is subject to silence (because the language of plants and humans is different), has been recorded as "nature (it is of itself)" beyond the image appealing to the fitness of the shape through a long period of deep observation and memory. After all, the basic prerequisites for dealing with nature are similar to the reproductive paintings of the past, but one difference is that the latest work style of the artist captures an intuitive image of the aesthetic order that combines nature with her inner side based on inspiration from abstract indicators contained in the landscape. “Intuitive” here refers to the fusion of chance and inevitability. In other words, her work is not based on “full impassivity” or “full intention.” Therefore, an art work should be open to coincidences, but they require a thin set of necessary links that do not let them scatter. Although her work may seem vague, the reason why it stimulates our view is that her paintings, which are expressed with the artist's own inner view, shows landscapes adapted by the artist and nature, and creates a scene that exudes a deep sense of artistic scent by deflecting the boundaries of the dichotomous aesthetic form very effectively. This is now the time and space of returning to self/nature beyond the others of nature, not something of someone specific. To prove the lack of distinction, the brush was so busy running on the canvas that it was driven by nature. That's why the yellow, red, blue, green, and black forms bloom again as flowers, trees, land, mudflat, and water plants even after they are all volatilizing on the canvas.


profile about Cho, Won Jeong

Solo Exhibition
2020 - "MEMORIES of MEMORIES" Invitation Exhibition, United Gallery, Seoul
2019 - "Garden", Invitation Exhibition Seogyeong gallery, Seoul
2019 - "WITH GRATITUDE 2", Gallery T2, Seoul
2019 - “Accidental” Salon des Indépendants en Corée. Gallery K, Seoul
2019 - "WITH GRATITUDE", Gallery 1898, Seoul
2018 - "Sensory Feeling", Gallery 41, Seoul
2017 - "Speak with Flowers", Gallery Gaia, Seoul
2014 - "Listen to flowers", Gallery Gaia, Seoul
2013 - "Happy Days", Namsan Gallery, Seoul
2011 - Namsan Gallery, Seoul
2010 - Café Hysop, Seoul
2010 - Namsan Library Gallery, Seoul

Group Exhibition
2020 – “Flow boundary”, Heuleum2020 Winter, Cafe Doksan Art Time, Seoul
2020 – “Hold your Dream”, Botanic621. Oulim Nuri Arts Center, Goyang.
2020 – Hanseong Baekje Songpa Art Festival, Yesong Museum of Art, Seoul
2020 - Yeon – In, 2020, Gallery 1898, Seoul
2020 - "The direction of contemporary art" Botanic621, Insa Art Center, Seoul
2020 - “Adieu, Dystopia”, Gallery Artcelsi, Gallery Artcelsi, Seoul
2020 - Design Art Fair, Hangaram Design Museum, Seoul art center
2020 - Affodable Art Fair, London
2019 - Korea Art Festival, Onse Art Center, Jeungpyeong,
2019 - Daegu Art Fair, Daegu EXCO, Daegu
2019 - Heuleum Regular exhibition, Mupungjidae Gallery, Beijing
2019 - "Now & Future" FREEDOM 2019, Fukuoka Asian Art Museum, Fukuoka
2019 - Gallery Conseil Opening Exhibition, Gallery conseil, InsaDong, Seoul
2019 - One& THree, Namsan Gallery, Seoul
2019 - "Tomorrow different from yesterday", FREEDOM 2019, Yangpyeong Art Museum, Yangpyeong
2019 - “Mix & Match” TOGA Art Affiliate artist exhibition, Gallery Guruji, Seoul
2019 - Yeon - In, 2019, Gallery 1898, Seoul
2019 - Heuleum, KEPCO Art Center Gallery, Seoul
2019 - Workshop 1, KEPCO Art Center Gallery, Seoul
2019 - “2019 SHARING”, Gallery Gaia, Seoul
2018 - “Contemporary Landscape”, CICA Museum, Gimpo
2018 - “Contemporary Art View”, Gallery Gaia, Seoul
2018 - “Vision”, Gallery Gaia, Insa-dong, Seoul
2017 - Protocol Part 3 Image of paintings ,Sungnam Art Center, Sungnam
2017 - One& Three Exhibition, Namsan Gallery, Seoul
2016 - Seoul Art Show, Seoul COEX, South Korea
2016 - art_CUE Exhibition, Gallery 72-1, Seoul
2015 - Vision Exhibition, Gallery Gaia, Insa-dong, Seoul
2015 - Exhibition of Hongik University Art Education Center, Hongik University Hyeondae gallery, Seoul
2015 - Korea-China-Japan Cultural Cooperation Art Festival Seoul Metro Museum, Seoul
2014 - Seoul Art Show, Seoul COEX, South Korea
2014 - art_Q Exhibition, Gallery 72-1, Seoul
2014 - Exhibition of Hongik University Art Education Center, Hongik University Hyeondae gallery, Seoul
2014 - Invitation Exhibition of Contemporary Art, Inha University Hospital, Incheon
2014 - Vision exhibition, Gallery Gaia, Seoul
2013 - 5th Hong·Mi·Sun, Seoul, Namsan Library Gallery, Seoul
2012 - 4th Hong·Mi·Sun, Seoul, Namsan Library Gallery, Seoul
2011 - 3th Hong·Mi·Sun, Seoul, Namsan Library Gallery, Seoul
2010 - 2th Hong·Mi·Sun, Seoul, Namsan Library Gallery, Seoul
2009 - 1th Hong·Mi·Sun, Gallery Whan, Insa-Dong, Seoul

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