Untitled Greetings

Installation view

Untitled Greetings, commissioned for the exhibition Works in the Open Air (Gyeonggi Museum of Modern Art, Ansan, 2010). Digital printing on fabric, 20 pieces, 60 x 180 cm each.

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Institutionalized and administered spaces — the ubiquitous theme parks. Their experience usually starts with the greeting message “welcome” and ends with “good bye.” Conventional expressions devoid of specific meaning, they nevertheless mark the boundaries of a space clearly. What would happen if the two greetings were uttered simultaneously, so the space in between disappeared? A space where one is welcomed and expected to leave at the same time? Especially in “multi­cultural” Ansan, where many foreign workers reside, the disappearance would feel more acute. There, the space has been replaced by an ever-expanding border, and one is always anxious of falling on one side: either “welcome” or “good bye.” And we realize the condition is not restricted to Ansan: it’s everywhere.

We translated these greetings into the twenty most widely used languages in the world, including Chinese, Spanish, English, Hindi, Urdu, Arabic, Portuguese, Russian, Japanese, German, Javanese, French, Vietnamese, Italian, Korean, Turkish, Tagalog, Polish, Ukrainian, and Malay.

(Originally published in Works in the Open Air [Ansan: Gyeonggi Museum of Modern Art, 2010], exhibition catalogue.)