Suji Park is a Korean-New Zealand ceramic sculptor and artist, known for creating pieces of distorted human forms, vessels and abstract objects. For her North Terrace commission, Suji Park’s project consists of many heads. Heads that turn, pushed and pulled, pressed and cracked, holding space within them like vessels. The forms themselves are imaginatively based on the traditional totem poles found in South Korea across the countryside. ‘When I was travelling around visiting small villages in Korea I could find janseung (Korean totem poles), sotdae (wooden poles or stone pillars with carved birds on their top), doltap (a stone built pagoda) and sinmok (sacred trees) in the entrance way. While the origin of these structures is unknown, they are believed to bring protection,’ explains Park. Park’s installation reveals her truly creative handling of clay, drawing from linguistic, cultural, ceramic and sculptural traditions – its highly material display will be a sumptuous feast of hand-melded traditions.
Image credit: Suji Park, Dodo (detail). Photo by Jungwoo Lee.