Han Nefkens Foundation Production Grant
You Only Live Twice
By Hwayeon Nam
At Busan Biennale 2022, We, on the Rising Wave
3 September – 6 November 2022
Credits: Hwayeon Nam, You Only Live Twice, video still, single channel video, six channel audio, 47'48", 2022
Produced by the Han Nefkens Foundation
Commissioned by the Busan Biennale Organizing Committee, Busan Biennale 2022, We, on the Rising Wave
We are glad to announce that You Only Live Twice by artist Hwayeon Nam, and produced by the Han Nefkens Foundation, in collaboration with the Busan Biennale, will be premiered on occasion of this year’s Biennale, We, on the Rising Wave, opening to the public on September 3rd to November 6th.
“You only live twice;
Once when you’re born,
And once when you look death in the face.”
- Matsuo Bashō (1644-1694)
A performance rehearsal is a time reserved for repeating the actions which will later be executed. Before a performance becomes an enactment of a singular event, performers use rehearsals as a means to prepare and practice the eventual extinction of the predetermined event. It is a repetition of suspension. You Only Live Twice captures a time of a performance rehearsal inspired by Auguste Rodin’s Gates of Hell in an obscure manner at Pier 1 of Busan Port, which has been abandoned after it served its purpose as a port. You Only Live Twice touches upon various aspects of human desire and imagination after the time of death and explores to link the time of rehearsal with death, the absolute event and gradual process of life, through embodying the complexity of emotions and expression of entangled human bodies conveyed in the Gates of Hell, referencing a scientific attempt towards the possibility of revival, and depicting the images of people falling asleep.
Hwayeon Nam (b.1979, Gwangju, South Korea) has focused her attention on performativity which research can provoke and on the ontological paradox of the choreography predicated on absence. On this basis, she has directed ongoing attention to the inscrutable aspects of time and temporary intervention in them, as well as fragility and differential potentiality of presence and existence. Through solo exhibitions such asTime Mechanics (Arko Art Center, Seoul, 2015) and Abdominal Routes (Kunsthal Aarhus, Aarhus, 2019) and group exhibitions including the 56th International Art Exhibition of the Venice Biennale (2015), she has resented her explorations of phenomena in which recorded time arrives in the present as new events through different rhythms and cycles, including human beings, nature, and history. In 2012, she began a multi-year research tracing the history of a Korean modern dancer Seung-hee Choi (1911–1969) and archival material on her work; this was subsequently broadened into an effort involving the writing of polyphonic histories and the relationship between performances and the performance archive. Related works have been presented at Festival Bo:m (2012), the Korean Pavilion at the 58 th Venice Biennale(2019), Mind Stream (Art Sonje Center, Seoul, 2020), and Performance/Documentation/Presentation(Lunds Konsthall, Lund, 2020).