Perrotin Seoul is pleased to present the first exhibition of Klara Kristalova in Korea.
This presentation brings together a selection of sculptures and drawings created specially for this occasion. Before being installed in Seoul, the pieces first inhabited her immediate surroundings, in her studio located in the Swedish countryside in the forest by a lake, North of the Stockholm region.
Kristalova's figures speak to our emotions immediately. The artist is a storyteller who uses the plasticity of sculpture to build small micro worlds, where something peculiar has just happened or is about to happen. She usually relates to a sculpture tradition that has its roots several hundred years in the past.
A brand new monograph which features a new essay by Fanni Fetzer, director at Kunstmuseum Luzern, is now available in our bookstore.
Kristalova's inspiration is not made of concrete and linear narratives, nor extraordinary and surreal facts, but rather it is innervated by a more 'normal' presence, a normality that is certainly a bit strange but ultimately quite common, part of a reality that offers a peek into the unbridled unconscious. Her community of characters accompanies her according to a narrative thread on its own. Undoubtedly, they are connected to the ordinary world and touch our unconscious; in a way, they are reassuring.1
The artist chooses the scale of her objects in a way that ensures her figures are never lovely. We are not looking from a birds-eye view at the universe of a cute family of mice, but experiencing the effect of Kristalova's art, which though not actually threatening, is an encounter occurring at eye level—this too because the figures are typically presented on a plinth, stage, or shelf. The qualities of surface, specifically the visibly hand-formed clay and painterly glaze intensify the impression that Kristalova's works are of their own essence. These are not small knickknacks with the complexion of porcelain, but assured and willful entities. Kristalova's figures communicate, they look or deliberately look away, they turn to us or away from us, they present themselves as reserved or obtrusive. Some figures are melancholic, others tired, patiently expectant, or have an almost vexatious presence. All are warm, but none sentimental.
We only need to listen, then the figures speak to us. We can eavesdrop and interrogate the sealed suitcase, perhaps for the secrets of our own family; see in the strange relation of the deer and tree the trouble in our parents' marriage or our own intimate relationships; recognize the energy that lies in the wicked mood of the apple. All of it exists within us.2
Press release courtesy Perrotin.