What Infinity Looks Like: The Art of Chul Hyun Ahn

More

The Korean artist uses simple materials like lights and one-way mirrors to create dizzying installations.

Framed within finite dimensions that glow in endless luminescence, the works of Chul Hyun Ahn confound our understanding of space. The renowned Korean artist explains how he sits apart from other light artists as his objective primarily pertains to the creation of space, or rather, the illusion of space. As light just happens to be his method of augmenting his works, the chief element Ahn uses to manipulate perspective is the one-way mirror.

Using basic industrial materials, Ahn changes our way of seeing things by applying what he calls “the barbershop-mirror effect.” This technique strategically arranges multiple mirrors to face and reflect each other, resulting in a visual expansion of emptiness— heightened by everyday fluorescent lighting.

SEE MORE FROM

Since securing representation with Baltimore, Maryland’s C. Grimaldis Gallery in 2002 and most recently with London’s Hada Contemporary, Ahn has proliferated his mirror technique in numerous ways, exhibiting nationally and internationally as a result. Beyond his ongoing Forked series that features infinite, geometric worlds, he’ll sometimes include living materials (as seen in Mu Rung Do Won (Infinite Garden) (2008)), or etches patterns onto mirrors as seen in his continuing Mirror Drawing series.

Though his works may be more minimalistic in terms of hardware, the striking impact that each one of his pieces conveys is stunning. Learn more about how he expands space through illusion in the video above, and check out a selection of our favorite works below.

[optional image description]Forked Series #23, 2012(Hada Contemporary)

[optional image description]Mirror Drawing #4, 2012 (Hada Contemporary)

[optional image description]Vertical lines #3, 2011 (Hada Contemporary)

This post also appears on The Creators Project, an Atlantic partner site. 

Jump to comments

Kyuhee Baik is Korea Editor of The Creators Project and lives and works in Seoul.

Get Today's Top Stories in Your Inbox (preview)

Sad Desk Lunch: Is This How You Want to Die?

How to avoid working through lunch, and diseases related to social isolation.


Elsewhere on the web

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register. blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Where Time Comes From

The clocks that coordinate your cellphone, GPS, and more

Video

Computer Vision Syndrome and You

Save your eyes. Take breaks.

Video

What Happens in 60 Seconds

Quantifying human activity around the world

Writers

Up
Down

Just In