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Comfort (diptych)

Comfort (diptych) (2021)

40" x 110" x 40" (each object)

Stainless steel (spoons, wire, hooks), mild steel, metal hardware, tape

In middle school, I envied how generic objects circulated with certainty and ease -- among losers and winners, their names, identities and utility were never subject to taunting or question. As a Korean immigrant in America, my conception of the American generic held for me a similar promise of belonging, comfort and deliverance, as did (to a more unconscious degree) the idea that cultures could be distinguished through their generic objects (the demarcation suggested cultural identities were ultimately stable; once "achieved," they would hold).


Here, I articulate Audre Lorde's erotic and Roland Barthes' Neutral through culturally generic (Korean and American) spoons, as a fantastical proposal to myself of belonging, comfort and ease. Alternately solid and airy, rigid and elastic, cool and warm, the hammocks spoon the human spine, evoking the erotic, and express subtle differences within and between them (as well as sleep), evoking the Neutral. Through repetition and parallelism, difference is at once cradled or held and vacated or lost; the comfort of resting in an ordered form is agitated by the sharp fragility and hardness of the wires and spoons.

Detail views (click to enlarge):

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