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Ligyung at the Forum


For Korean artist Ligyung, working with light enables her to challenge the veracity of the world it allows us to perceive. At the Forum, she invites visitors to experience immateriality, drawing on the space’s natural light as the support for a new work in situ.   

Fondation d'Entreprise Hermès - Ligyung at the Forum
© Ligyung

Countertransference is the closing work of the Forum’s 2014 programme, dedicated to the place of the medium in contemporary art. After the fine materials and artisan skills of Condensation, and Tsuneko Taniuchi’s use of the body as support, Korean artist Ligyung’s installation focuses on the immaterial. Ligyung has worked with light since the beginning of her career, in 2000, finding new ways to define the relationship between the visible and invisible—and challenging our established certainties in the process.

In Tokyo, two installations explore this question.

The Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil (2001) is an environment designed to annihilate our traditional points of reference. We enter a plain white room, devoid of corners, lit by a harsh light eliminating all shadows. The light—a metaphor for the forbidden fruit of the eponymous tree—creates a luminous halo prompted by our desire to see. Paradoxically, in this space where everything is laid bare, there is absolutely nothing to be seen. 

Ligyung has created a second, new piece playing on the variations of natural light provoked by the Forum’s glass brick façade. The Serpent’s Kiss seeks to express the invisible, depicting the radiance of the sun. In the words of Forum curator Reiko Setsuda, the piece ‘sets out to create a symbolic sculpture of impalpable light, while at the same time alerting us to our own credulous faith in the illusory truth of what we see with our own eyes. The ideal vehicle for further exploration of the flaws and limits of the visible world. 

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Le Forum, Tokyo, Japan, 5-4-1, Ginza, Chuo-ku, Tokyo 104-0061,

Monday - Saturday 11am - 8pm, Sunday 11am - 7pm


Curator : Reiko Setsuda