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CultureCampus Review
Photography: Making Time an Art Work
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승인 2016.02.11  21:24:34
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 Photography is a relatively familiar art field to people among the other fields of art such as painting and sculpture. Thanks to the scientific advancement of smart phones, anyone can easily take a photo in our daily lives. Therefore, some people tend to underestimate how a picture works. However, if you think more about what goes on in the mind of photographers when they click the shutter of a camera, you can’t possibly undervalue photography. Last November 5th to 12th, the graduation exhibition of the department of photography was held at the Luminarie Gallery. Although there are some students who visited the exhibition, CAH has prepared a review of the show for people who missed the amazing opportunity to appreciate the students’ art works.

About the Exhibition

The department of photography’s graduation exhibition was held at the Luminarie Gallery from November 5th to 12th. The photographic department of CAU was founded in 1964 for the first time in South Korea and therefore it is one of the best in the education of photography. Almost 50% of current university professors in the department of photography have graduated from CAU. There are also many active professional photographers who have studied photography as their major at CAU. It means if you go to the graduation exhibition, you can appreciate the work of many promising young photographers. About 50 senior students in the department displayed their work, which they put passion and talent into. As the exhibition took place at a gallery near to Gangnam Station instead of the school building, many people, not only students of CAU but also ordinary people could enjoy it. 

Take a Closer Look at Pictures!

-      Perfect Days by Jung Ji-sol

His work was inspired by ordinary people’s experiences and the relationship among people around him. During the trip which he sat out with his girlfriend, he found a red-bellied frog and looked closely at its eyes. The frog was also staring at him. He took a picture of the moment and showed the picture to his girlfriend. She also handed out a photo of him watching the frog. Suddenly, he realized many viewpoints were around him including his girlfriend and the frog. Therefore, he captured his realization in his work. You can see someone is taking a picture of the sky on the grass of campus, one woman is taking a photo of him in the distance and one man is taking a photo of them on the rooftop in his work.

-      Objective Loss by Kim-kyung

Objective Loss is a work that stems from one question ‘What are ‘existence’ and ‘absence’?’ She has thought about the things that exist after one’s life. For example, she asked questions to herself such as ‘even if its owner is dead, does memory still remain?’ Maybe it is right but at the same time wrong, because one’s memory might disappear, but still exist in someone else’s memories. A photo is a proof of the fact that something existed on the earth to her and that’s why the act of taking a photo is important to her.

At the Exit of Exhibition

If you entered the gallery without any information about the title of the exhibition; the graduation exhibition, you may not notice that it is made by university students only. The works were sophisticated to that extent; the audience could feel the characteristics of each student in the picture. There were various kinds of works such as fine art pictures, commercial photography, and digital art works, so even the people who do not have a background knowledge or interest about them could still enjoy the exhibition. Behind such a wonderful exhibition, there must be enormous effort made by the students who studied and practiced photography for 4 years to create their work. They proved that ‘effort will never betray you’ through this show. Furthermore, it was successful because they chose to increase the accessibility of the exhibition by having the show in a gallery located in Gangnam instead of An-seong campus.

 However, there was one fly in the ointment. Due to the small sized gallery and fixed exhibition time, each student didn’t have enough space to display their work. The pictures were hanging on the walls with only a narrow clearance between each other painting. It disrupted the spectators’ ability concentrate on each picture. Furthermore, if more people, especially students in other majors of CAU visited this exhibition, it would have been a much better graduation exhibition. Although there were many people in the gallery, most of them were related to the department of photography, and only a few other departments’ students knew about the exhibition. To improve this, more advertisements must be implemented in the future for the betterment of the exhibition.

Just Feel the Photos!

      What is a good photo and what is bad? Photography is highly accessible to us, and this fact might make people feel that is difficult to appreciate photos as art works at the same time. Therefore, people tend to evaluate pictures by composition and light and pretend to know well about it by using other technical terms. These things make people feel uncomfortable when trying to appreciate them. Essentially, the students who took the picture may not want people to be bound by those things and to be disturbed by them. In fact, it is natural for ordinary people not to know about photography as well as the experts. Therefore, don’t attempt to understand photos with your head. Why don’t you accept them just way they are? One of the ways to appreciate photos naturally is to think about the attention of the photographers. The important thing in this process is not to limit your imagination by reading the title but just to concentrate on the story of the photo. The second way is to be faithful to your emotion. What comes first to your mind when you see the photo? What factors in the photos make you feel like that? After answering these questions, you might know more about the photo.

How long do you spend enjoying one photo? Although it may be different by person and the work, it doesn’t take long on average. Perhaps, you may appreciate some works as you walk. However, for your short enjoyment and for the photos, which were made in a moment, students must have spent a long time to study and practice. Unfortunately, you have missed the chance this time, but there is always next year’s graduation exhibition!

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