b. 1988, South Korea

Mire Lee Biography

Both repulsive yet curiously compelling, Mire Lee's kinetic sculptures explore notions of sexuality and desire. Common to Lee's works is her use of silicone hoses and tubes, whose repetitive movements include transporting and extracting a milky, glutinous liquid.

Read More

Kinetic Sculptures

Mire Lee's kinetic sculptures typically involve simple mechanisms, enabling repetitions of movements that reflect her interest in anthropomorphic sculptures. While participating in the group exhibition The Art of Not Landing at Seoul's Cake Gallery in 2016, the artist presented works including Exercise for things with bones (2016), which began as a small metal object that reminded Lee of legs. Fueled by a tiny motor, the kinetic sculpture causes the two horizontal parts of the objects to appear as though they are walking.

As Lee continued to experiment with machinery and its evocation of the human body, her sculptures began to resemble living organisms. Saboteurs, exhibited at the 15th Lyon Biennale in 2019, consists of pumps, pipes, and tubes that contort and crawl across the floor while secreting a white mixture of glycerine and other viscous substances.

Fetish and Vorarephilia

Fetishes and erotic desires are recurring subjects in Mire Lee's practice. In 2015, while staying in Paris for a residency, various city lockdowns following the Bataclan attacks led the artist to fixate on the media coverage of the attacks and grope porn—a genre of pornography in which unsuspecting young women are assaulted on public transport. Lee's fascination with the genre would surface in her video installations such as Andrea, in my mildest dreams (2016) and Andrea, Ophelia, at the endless house (2018), which incorporate clips from pornographic videos before the 'groping' happens.

'Vore', short for vorarephilia, the fetish of being swallowed by or swallowing another, also appears in several of Lee's works. The pipes and hoses in Ophelia when you died (2018) destruct themselves in a sequence of movements that evoke an abortion, while i wanna be together (2019) sees the artist stuff parts of artworks by other artists—including Kanitha Tith and Marie Rime—inside translucent tubes. In both works, the distance between one entity and the other is completely obliterated, causing them to become one.

Carriers

In Carriers, her 2020 solo exhibition at Art Sonje Center in Seoul, Mire Lee envisioned bodies and her sculptures as 'carriers'. Resembling an animal's intestines, the centrepiece Carriers (2020) repeatedly extracts, carries, and produces a viscous substance through its tubes. On the floor were a group of sculptures titled Horizontal Forms, also reminiscent of innards, which the viewer could study from a voyeuristic position on Concrete Benches for "Carriers" (both 2020).

Exhibitions and Recognitions

Mire Lee has held numerous solo exhibitions, including Carriers, Art Sonje Center, Seoul (2020); words were never enough, LilyRobert, Paris (2020); Het is of de stenen spreken, Casco Art Institute, Utrecht (2019); and War is Won by Sentiment Not by Soldiers, Insa Art Space, Seoul (2014).

Selected group exhibitions include Het HEM, Zaandam (2021); Breathing Through Skin, Antenna Space, Shanghai (2020); Surface Tension, Sharjah Art Foundation (2019); Gwangju Biennale (2018); Moving / Image, Arko Art Center, Seoul (2017); A Snowflake, Kukje Gallery, Seoul (2017); NERIRI KIRURU HARARA, Mediacity Seoul 2016, Seoul Museum of Art (2016).

Lee was shortlisted for the Future Generation Prize in 2021, the same year as Tina Kim Gallery began representing the artist. A solo presentation of Lee's works at Tina Kim is scheduled for September 2022.

Further Information

Mire Lee's website can be found here.

Sherry Paik | Ocula | 2021

Mire Lee Featured Artworks

View All (9)
Surface with many holes: concrete nets IV by Mire Lee contemporary artwork painting, sculpture
Mire Lee Surface with many holes: concrete nets IV, 2022 Latex, burlap jute, pigmented silicone oil, concrete
59.7 x 21.6 cm
Tina Kim Gallery Contact Gallery
Surface with many holes: concrete nets I by Mire Lee contemporary artwork sculpture
Mire Lee Surface with many holes: concrete nets I, 2022 Latex, burlap jute, pigmented silicone oil, concrete
111.8 x 45.7 cm
Tina Kim Gallery Contact Gallery
Endless House: Harlequin Baby by Mire Lee contemporary artwork sculpture
Mire Lee Endless House: Harlequin Baby, 2022 Fired clay, silicone, glycerine, glaze, peristaltic pump and other mixed media
60 x 80 x 200 cm
Tina Kim Gallery Contact Gallery
Hanging net IX - Liars by Mire Lee contemporary artwork sculpture
Mire Lee Hanging net IX - Liars, 2022 Latex, netting, pigmented silicone oil, steel
302.3 x 73.7 x 10.2 cm
Tina Kim Gallery Contact Gallery
Horizontal Forms I by Mire Lee contemporary artwork sculpture
Mire Lee Horizontal Forms I, 2022 Concrete
223.5 x 53.3 x 15.2 cm
Tina Kim Gallery Contact Gallery
Horizontal Forms IV by Mire Lee contemporary artwork sculpture
Mire Lee Horizontal Forms IV, 2022 Concrete
38.1 x 39.4 x 161.3 cm
Tina Kim Gallery Contact Gallery
Horizontal forms III by Mire Lee contemporary artwork sculpture
Mire Lee Horizontal forms III, 2022 Concrete
60.96 x 45.72 x 43.18 cm
Tina Kim Gallery Contact Gallery
Mom in Amsterdam by Mire Lee contemporary artwork sculpture, moving image
Mire Lee Mom in Amsterdam, 2022 Video, concrete
Tina Kim Gallery Contact Gallery

Mire Lee Recent Exhibitions

Mire Lee Represented By

Mire Lee In Ocula Magazine

View All (7)

In Ocula Advisory

Follow Mire Lee
Stay ahead.
Receive updates on new artworks,
exhibitions and articles.
Your personal data is held in accordance with our privacy policy.
Follow
Do you have an Ocula account?
Get Access
Join Ocula to request price and availability of artworks, exhibition checklists and build a collection of favourite artists, galleries and artworks.
Subscribe me to the Ocula newsletter.
I agree to Ocula's Terms & Conditions.
Your personal data is held in accordance with our Privacy Policy.
Do you have an Ocula account? Login
Thank you for joining us. Just one more thing...
Soon you will receive an email asking you to complete registration. If you do not receive it then you can check and edit the email address you entered.
Close
Thank you for joining us.
You can now request price and availability of artworks, exhibition checklists and build a collection of favourite artists, galleries and artworks.
Close
Welcome back to Ocula
Enter your email address and password below to login.
Login
Don't have an account? Sign Up
I forgot my password
Reset Password
Enter your email address to receive a password reset link.
Reset Link Sent
We have sent you an email containing a link to reset your password. Simply click the link and enter your new password to complete this process.
Login