The MCA Will Be Filled with Colourful Architectural Installations for Its Huge Do Ho Suh Exhibition

For its big summer showcase, the MCA will host the first-ever large-scale solo exhibition in the southern hemisphere by South Korean artist Do Ho Suh.
Sarah Ward
May 23, 2022

Some artists cover everything they can with dots and pumpkins. Others fill galleries with wool. For South Korea's Do Ho Suh, creating brightly coloured fabric structures — staircases, corridors and the like — is a big part of his impressive and attention-grabbing work.

Known for creating large-scale sculptures and architectural installations, the acclaimed sculptor and artist fashions pieces that art lovers can walk through, within and around, all to truly experience his musings on space, memory and the body. And, if that sounds like how you'd next like to get your creative fix, Suh's work will be on display at the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia this summer.

From Friday, November 4, as part of the Sydney International Art Series 2022–23, the MCA will play host to Suh's first-ever large-scale solo exhibition in the southern hemisphere. A Sydney exclusive, it'll showcase not just his giant eye-catching pieces, but also other sculptures, drawings, prints, models and video works — which draw upon not only his childhood in South Korea, but also his time spent in New York, Berlin, London and elsewhere.

Do Ho Suh, Staircase-III, 2010, installation view, Museum Voorlinden, Wassenaar, 2019, polyester fabric, stainless steel, Tate: Purchased with funds provided by the Asia Pacific Acquisitions Committee 2011, image courtesy the artist, Museum Voorlinden, Wassenaar, Lehmann Maupin Gallery, New York, Hong Kong, Seoul and London, and Victoria Miro, London and Venice, © the artist, photograph: Antoine van Kaam.

Highlights include a full-scale reconstruction of Suh's childhood home using paper rubbings, which'll sit in the Museum's Level 1 North gallery as part of an inaugural presentation called Rubbing/Loving Project: Seoul Home; his Hub series, which lets visitors walk through his interconnecting fabric structures; and Staircase-III, which comes from the Tate Collection, and does indeed feature a hand-stitched fabric staircase.

Or, there's the floor-based (and clearly aptly named) Floor, which is made from thousands of tiny sculptured figures with their arms in the air, all holding up transparent glass plates that gallery visitors will walk over — and also Who Am We?, a portrait-based piece that uses tiny pictures as custom wallpaper, and ponders identity and individuality.

Plus, based on Suh's experience with conscription, Metal Jacket is made out of stainless-steel military ID tags that are splayed out like roof shingles or fish scales.

Spanning three decades, the full range of pieces also includes other replicas of places that Suh worked or lived in over his life — and, as the huge, walk-through nature of many of his works demonstrates, a big focus on scale.

Do Ho Suh, Floor (detail), 1997-2000, installation view, Lehmann Maupin Gallery, New York, 2000, PVC figures, glass plates, phenolic sheets, polyurethane resin, image courtesy the artist, Lehmann Maupin Gallery, New York, Hong Kong, Seoul and London © the artist.

Do Ho Suh opens at the Museum of Contemporary Art on Friday, November 4, 2022.

Top image:Do Ho Suh, Passage/s, 2017, installation view, Victoria Miro, London, polyester fabric, stainless steel, image courtesy the artist and Victoria Miro, London and Venice, © the artist, photograph: Thierry Bal.

Published on May 23, 2022 by Sarah Ward
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