Coming up in march The complexity of life can be overwhelming and numbing. I have learned that I must breakdown, compartmentalize, see, and experience what existence is for me on a personal level. Rid the clutter and the distractions of everyday living. Eliminate the background noise of the circus barker. The permutations of varied relationships focused, simply, with love, trust, and honesty as the benchmarks. So, too, art. Line, perspective, pattern, texture: the elements of design. Art at its most basic, and at its most beautiful. It is irony that while the gigantic and monstrosity impresses, or frightens, with its enormity, it all begins with a dream, an idea, then a line followed by more to eventually become the behemoth that swallows all. And to perceive it and to experience it, it must be taken apart bit by bit to its origins. I look at the whole, however, I see the essence. I hear the cacophonous calls, yet I listen to the whispered pleadings. Most ironic is that even at its most basic, I might not understand it. But I do appreciate and love it; perhaps that is all that truly matters anyway. Mark Eaton
Welcome to AE cinco What is reality? Is there only one truth based solely on science or is it possible for there to be separate realities based on individuals, or time or people groups? With Art Elemento Cinco we seek truth in whatever artistic form it presents itself.
FOUNDER / Joe Wabe EDITORS/ Andrea Galvez, Lorryn Smit, Frank McKinley ART DIRECTOR/ Joe Wabe CONTRIBUTING WRITERS/ Leigh Hellman, Amy Badenhorst, Andrea Galvez, Hedgie Choi, Matthew LaPlant, Travis Major Matthew Rehrig CONTRIBUTING ARTISTS/ Debra M. Josephson , Jimmy Mcintyre, Yoon Hyo Joo MEDIA & DISTRIBUTION/ , Lorryn Smit, Matthew Rehrig ADVERTISING/ Joe Wabe PRINTING/ Alex J. Hwang WEBSITE/ artelemento.com EMAIL/ firstname.lastname@example.org SPECIAL THANKS/ To Andrea Galvez for her invaluable contribution to Art Elemento
To you or me the number five may simply be a representation of a quantity, but it had a very profound significance to the ancient Greeks. Five signified the marriage of heaven and earth, of man and god. Was that real? Was it real to them? This issue we’ve explored multiple meanings of truth. We start with a discussion on representing reality in HDR photography, with outstanding photography and processing by Jimmy McIntyre. We continue by exploring the misconceptions of rap music and the background of local group The Megook Movement, and then peek inside the real life of an English-speaking foreigner who isn’t a teacher, GFN Radio DJ “T-man” Zaid. We also take a look at living in a multicultural society with the Entity Amid artists’ showcase, and then learn more about the ugly truth that is domestic violence as the Vagina Monologues come to Gwangju. I’m thrilled to have been a part of this issue of Art Elemento, and encourage any and all art citizens out there to get involved with whatever media you’re most comfortable. Enjoy,
Cover art by Hyein Lee
Cover design by Jimmy Mcintyre
I WOULD LIKE TO THANK EVERYONE WHO HAS FURNISHED INFORMATION AND MATERIALS FOR THIS ISSUE. UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED, ARTISTS FEATURE IN ART ELEMENTO RETAIN COPYRIGHT TO THEIR WORK. WE WILL BE PLEASED TO CORRECT ANY MISTAKES OR OMISSIONS IN OUR NEXT ISSUE. WE WELCOME EDITORIAL SUBMISSIONS; HOWEVER, RETURN POSTAGE MUST ACCOMPANY ALL UNSOLICITED MANUSCRIPTS, ART, DRAWINGS AND PHOTOGRAPHIC MATERIAL IF THEY ARE TO BE RETURNED. NO RESPONSIBLITY CAN BE ASSUMED FOR UNSOLICITED MATERIALS. ALL LETTERS WILL BE TREATED AS UNCONDITIONALLY ASSIGNED FOR PUBLICATION AND COPYRIGHT PURPOSES AND SUBJECTS TO ART ELEMENTO’S RIGHT TO EDIT AND COMMENT EDITORIALLY.
5 Debra Josephson8 Entity Amid10 Shoulds12 Yooh Hyo Joo16 Megook Movement18 T-Man20 The Vagina Monologues22 Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is prohibited. Opinions expressed in articles are those of the author. All rights reserved on entire contents. Advertising inquiries should be directed to email@example.com
by Debra M. Josephson
www.dmerylphoto.com I am an explorer and treasure hunter. I don’t use a pirate’s map with
clues leading me to a ship of gold medallions, although I would be happy to call myself a Goonie if given the opportunity. In addition, it has nothing to do with discovering a lost city and staking my flag on the land either. However, it does have to with finding gems wherever I go and getting lost in the moment. It’s about living globally and being a freelance photographer. I find and create treasures and narratives with a camera. Perhaps this current lifestyle choice manifested from everyday experiences as a child on Long Island. My father and I would take long bike rides in and around our neighborhood, always finding a new route to our destinations. More vividly, was the adrenaline rush I would get from jumping over fences together to avoid paying an entrance fee at a festival. Certainly, these are not the most dynamic tales, though being from a conservative upbringing, they shed light on my unwavering spirit. Both experiences offered adventure, creative thinking and an alternative path to the final result. In hindsight, getting degrees in studio arts and theory fostered that innate desire to live beyond familial and cultural expectations. Mix this up all together, and you have the heart of an artist making new paths for others to consider. The value of having a nomadic lifestyle is priceless. It challenges me to go beyond the median and nurtures my philosophies to life, which in return, is applied into my photography. For in-
stance, I believe that excellence comes from giving attention to the details. As I wander through a city, an abandoned shrine or just getting from home to work, I am constantly looking at the components in my surroundings that tell the story of that moment. I look up, down, inside, close up and from afar with an investigative eye covering all my bases. Finding the details are the finest jewels for an explorer like myself. And with any good investigator, every base must be covered at all times. After a while living in South Korea, certain trends started to grow on me. The one that has stayed current was cutting bangs. My students, then, noticed the change immediately and commented on how young I looked. It’s the ultimate compliment there. In this situation, I think about the expression, “When In Rome” and maintain the mindset about considering and adapting other beliefs into the ways I express myself. I am a believer in cultural hybrids and the transcultural
ideal of embracing all people. With my camera, I am naturally drawn to seeing this, but many times with an underlying humor. I have ease in expressing this cultural mix and it’s probably one of my prized photographic possessions. Perhaps what I value most, doesn’t have to be discovered, but harnessed and embraced every time I go shoot. It’s that when I am looking through my camera; I am seeing the story below the surface and able to express the beauty of our world in that way. Providing it for clients and enthusiasts is the treasure I give back to others to appreciate with me. A friend’s birthday wish to me this year ended with “….to a person who can charm anyone with her smile, and inspire anyone with her photography.” I hope that I shared a piece of that smile and inspiration with you. What drives you to be a Goonie?
Photos Essay by Debra M. Josephson
by Doug Stuberwww.
Entity Amid, the cleverly titled art exhibit that ran fromcom November to December 10 2011, at the GIC Gallery included paintings, photographs and poetry, and was masterminded by Lisa Mynhardt, the local artist, via South Africa, who, after a successful solo exhibition at the gallery in Dr Parks Plastic surgery center, across form Shinsegae in the â€œMr. Pizzaâ€? building.
Mynhardt, who has been a force in both acting and art, on top of her teaching career (now at Chosun University) wanted artists and viewers to explore the meaning of being an entity amid a different culture. Myriad responses came forth, but the general take was that for the strong-at-heart, a new culture can mean new inspiration, be it artist, writing, musical, acting, or in the way one teaches. This is fine and dandy for the westerners, and those from South Africa, the Philippines, New Zealand and Australia who come to teach as “native English speakers,” but sadly lacking in this show, and lacking in the general outreach of the Gwangju International Center itself, is the broad number of international residence for whom being an Entity Amid often means being beat up by their husbands, spit at on the streets, and a “last resort for marriage” among Korean men who no longer fit the ill for well-educated “upwardly mobile” Korean women. So, while Hughie Samson’s creative photographs, poems by Mynhardt.
by Jimmy Mcintyreww.
dmerylphoto. eyes tell me he com
The old man doesn’t seem to be smiling. Rather, his has a secret that amuses him - a secret that I may understand one day. Next! The deep blue river doesn’t seem to belong in the middle of its surroundings, all blanketed in deep snow. There’s something that pulls this picture together, I’m not sure what it is though.
I can sit and admire other peoples’ photographs for hours on flickr. com. Photography is an art form that seems to ring true for me. It is without boundaries. Alfred Stieglitz, a 19th pioneer in photography argued that: “Photography is not an art. Neither is painting, nor sculpture, literature or music. They are only different media for the individual to express his aesthetic feelings… You do not have to be a painter or a sculptor to be an artist. You may be a shoemaker. You may be creative as such. And, if so, you are a greater
artist than the majority of the painters whose work is shown in the art galleries of today.”
the natural beauty in things and not altering an image to artificially embed some vague concept of beauty.
Yet in photography, as with all art, there’s ever-present snobbery. Never more is this conceit evident than in the HDR (High Dynamic Range) vs non-HDR argument. So-called ‘purists’ consider HDR a lesser form of photography. These purists argue that a photograph should be a true reflection of reality – our skill should lie in composition and not post processing. They cling onto this notion that photography should be about capturing
There are two main problems with this argument. Firstly, there isn’t a camera in the world that can accurately capture most scenes. Try as we might, we cannot replicate the light distribution of real life. HDR, on the other hand, offers us a far more realistic depth of light and colour. Therefore, if the purists’ wish to capture the true nature of a scene, then HDR offers us the best option to do that.
Photography is not an art. Neither is painting, nor sculpture, literature or music. They are only different media for the individual to express his aesthetic feelingsâ€Ś
14 What’s most confusing about the purist argument is the fact that many of their images are black and white or sepia - neither of which are particularly accurate reflections of real life. This contradiction is often ignored. The second problem concerns Stieglitz’s argument that photography, as all art, is an aesthetic expression of the artist’s feelings. In photography, while we are looking at a particular subject, it is through the photographer’s perspective that we are actually experiencing it. Therefore, the true subject of an image is the photographer’s interpretation of the subject. With HDR we are given a wonderful set of tools that allow us to express our interpretation far more thoroughly than before. I’ve read countless arguments on this topic and nearly every debate flows in the same direction as the last: purists saying what ‘should’ constitute art, and advocates of HDR asking why.
The word ‘should’ is as poisonous as any when it comes to the assassination of creativity. It restricts us and pulls us in a direction we don’t want to go. Even saying the word out loud leaves you feeling heavy. Never have I heard anyone say ‘I really should do….’ and feel good about it. The day we start to accept other peoples’ ‘shoulds’ in an artistic context is the day we see our creative curiosity shrink. It’s also a subtle showing that we are looking for acceptance from someone seemingly more knowledgeable than ourselves. This concept is very concerning in an artistic sense. If art could be considered as self expression then surely no one is more knowledgeable than us about our own interpretations. It’s curious that I’ve chosen to write this, given that I don’t consider myself an artist. What irked me into penning this article is my fundamental dislike
of people restricting my options. My ‘style’ of photography is nothing more than an expression of my interest and no one else’s. I see a scene that interests me, I find the best composition for me, and then I edit the picture using whatever I see fit until it’s at a state that peaks my interest most. There is no pretention, no ‘shoulds’, and no one else’s expectations to please. People may not consider it an art form nor may they think of it as photography. Nevertheless, I feel an added element of satisfaction knowing that my work was for me, and me alone.
Yoon Hyo Joo When I was asked to put together my art work along with a 700 words write up for a two page article for Art Elemento I kind of panicked. What should I write about? The stories behind my art work? How I usually come up with my paintings? Is this my hobby or my real job? Will the way I write affect how people view my paintings? Time to stop thinking...
artelemento 그저 밑 색을 먼저 칠하고 채색을 하는 방법을 터득했다던가 아크릴 물감 사용이 조금 능숙해졌다던가 라는 게 최근 내 작업의 소소한 성취라고 할 수 있겠다. 어떤 이야길하면 좋을지 머리를 가만가만 굴려 봐도 딱히 하고 싶 은 이야기가 떠오르지 않는다. 내 가 이렇게 멋없는 사람이었던가. 아니, 다만 내 글은 있는 그대로 를 망치고 말 것이다. 다 그린 그 림을 보는 그 기분을. 세련되고 잘빠진 문장을 만들어보려고 단 어를 그러모아 봐도 실패다. 누가 물어봐도 박약아처럼 쩔쩔매다 말 은 목구멍을 넘지 못하겠지? 이런 나에게 2페이지(씩이나) 지 면을 내 준 Art Elemento 에게 감 사드린다. 덕분에 내 그림을 많은 사람들이 보는 좋은 경험을 가질 수 있게 되었다. 아! 최근에는 그림책 작업을 시작 했다. 언젠가 내가 만든 그림책이 출판될 때까지 포기 하지 않을 것 이다. 언젠간 되겠지 뭐. 어릴 때 부터 우리는 무엇을 하고 싶은지, 뭐가 되고 싶은지 하는 대단한 질 문들에 시달려왔다. 난 언제나 그 림을 그리면서도 흘끔흘끔 남의 대답을 훔쳐봤다. 이제 생각은 그 만 하고 그냥 그리는 거다. 건강 때문에 학교를 쉬느라 할 일이 없 는데 혹시 나의 변변찮은 재능이 필요하다고 생각이 든다면 알려주 었으면 좋겠다. 개인의 영리목적 이 아니면 무료다.
To create and publish my own illustration book has been one of my dreams and will not rest until see it happen”
by AC Cutta
We are the Megook Movement. Now before you start thinking “mega millions and big booties”, think again. Sorry to disappoint you, but that’s not what we’re about. In the end, when all the perks are stripped away, it all boils down to one thing… The SESSION. This is where the art is made, where all the creative action happens and a time when brothers are born. These are the things that Megook Movement is about and this is the story of our sessions.
In the beginning things were grimy and simple. It was just a kid from Seattle (AC CUTTA) taking a taxi across town to meet up with a kid from the south side of the Chi (DJ Hypnotiq). The microphone hissed. The doubles where off. Nothing was understood or sounded right or even close to sounding good. We found ourselves record-
ing on a mic found for free on the side of the road and spent many late nights filled with “poju”, dirty freestyles and a bit of poetry. Even the occasional flash of brilliance from a Stiq Figure or a BJINX. In a strange way there was more passion in these early days than there could ever be again.
And so it continued until one night a man of beats arrived: Philanomics. The quality of the sounds coming from him was a watershed movement. The unique rhythms seemed to fill a space in the room. With one brief glance and a nod of affirmation between us, everything changed. We knew in that moment that what was once just an
artelemento idea, could become something real. Now the search could begin for a professional studio. Something to give us a real sound. After visiting several places we settled on a music hagwon near downtown. For a good price we thought what the hell, right? It soon became apparent that despite the best intentions, this was not going to work. We had never recorded, much less rap, and but this was just not going to work. We decided that there was only one way we would be satisfied: the studio had to be made. So a condenser mic, a stand, an external sound card, cool edit pro, and a bunch of studio foam later a studio was born. The sessions now had a home. An anchor for everything that was to come. Oddly enough, it was the same time when Mr. Green arrived. Naughty mouth and all. A very true talent of words that just needed dirt and water to grow. In the spring of 2010, Mr. Green, Stiq Figure, DJ Hypnotiq and AC CUTTA began recording the first album, “Listen and Repeat”. It was a mixture of a little north west peace, a little down south dirt and a little bit of south side Chi swag, laid over some east coast soul .
Then, Megook Movement discovered its first none-megook. Bright eyed with an overflowing passion and excitement about what he saw. He wanted in. He was De Trong of Duala. His style was deep, unique, accented, and in a beautiful contrast to all the others. Another element was added and the session grew. Many have passed through the session. Several more rappers, a few beat makers, a singer… Many wanted to express themselves in this place for a brief time, but only a few pushed themselves to do so consistently. For in the end art takes commitment and sacrifices that not everyone is willing to make when the art is their only reward. Many have misconceptions about the time that rappers spend making their music. It is more of a tedious process than a wild, spurt of swagger. Time spent recording and editing but the more time is spent, the more the music grows. These long hours have made bonds between the Megook brothers that can never be broken. The bond of music, the bond of shared creation. The albums, the radio interviews, the videos, the shows, the logos, the shirts, the websites and everything else have
all been born from taking time every week to be creative. To pursue art without any promise of outcome. That my friends, is what the Session is all about.
Many have misconceptions about the time that rappers spend making their music. It is more of a tedious process than a wild, spurt of swagger.
t-man on air
by Andrea Galvez
He’s been around the globe, visiting 15 countries, some for mere minutes, some for months, but Zaid “T-man” has now been laying his head down daily in Gwangju since 2008. While almost four years may not quite land him on the short list of “long-time” foreigners in Gwangju, he easily flies to the top of the “non-English teacher” list. Last year he quit his teaching job to take on the glamorous life of a radio DJ – love motel lodging and all – and is one of few foreigners to find a way out of the classroom while staying in Korea. He agreed to give us all the gritty details on his real daily life.
artelemento AE: Why did you first come to Korea? T-man: I was managing a busy bar in San Francisco, was 33 at the time, and it was a Friday or Saturday night — the money night. Alas, a patron who’d been on the early party train, decided to drunkenly regurgitate their dinner (pad thai I believe, something noodley, and of Asian origin) on their way out. The remains were all over the front entryway. Needless to say, it fell to me to clean it up as quickly as possible, so the night for everyone could be redeemed as quickly as possible. On my knees, with pink dish washing gloves, and the aroma of second hand pad thai mixed with a couple long islands, and a splash of bleach, I had an epiphany. My life needed to change. I’d taught English for a year in The Czech Republic, had a TEFL certificate from that post-universityfinding-myself experience, and when you throw “TEFL” and “job” into any search engine, Korea pops up a lot... AE: Everyone knows the life of an English teacher in Korea, or at least some version of it. What is the life a non-English-teaching foreigner? What do you do all day? T-man: Well, to be honest, and completely, utterly boring, work takes up most of my time. I generally wake up around 10-10:30, get online, and research the night’s show, figure out what’s going to be played by noon, because I have to put the playlist into the system by three - and that takes time. Then I work on the news reports for the day, reinterpreting an English translation of what will be read on the air. Then I have to record at least some aspect of the weekend’s show, try and coordinate guests and DJ’s for upcoming shows, and cue up the evening show, in between reading the live news at 6 pm and 7 pm. My live show is from 8:05 to 10, then, in
a daze, I stumble back to my abode, a love motel, and do some prep work for the next day. Hopefully eat, and, when the lazy guy isn’t on vacation, I go to sleep with Jon Stewart. There, I said it. Don’t judge. AE: And what do you miss most about teaching? T-man: Making a difference in someone’s life. Being a radio DJ is great - it’s a lot of work, especially for someone with my limited knowledge - but it’s great. But in a lot of ways, it is meaningless. Everyday I make this “snowman,” everday the snowman melts, and I have to make a new one. Sure - someone somewhere (hopefully) is enjoying the show, maybe I make their night a little easier, or more entertaining, but it is - bottom line - just a radio show. ... but teaching someone something they can use forever. That smacks of an importance missing in most professions. AE: What do you NOT miss at all about teaching? T-man: Those days when you don’t feel like you’re making a difference. When it’s just you, and a bitter, angry, and sleepy mob of them with an infinite distance in between. AE: Can you give us an idea of what your show is like, and why we should listen? T-man: Well, my M-Town is designed to be an “exploration” of western music. But I should emphasize, that means, radio friendly western music. As much as death metal is interesting, alas, I can’t play it... and to be honest, it scares me… Each night is targeted towards variety, and different “moods.” So - Sunday - for example, is the chill portion of
the weekend’s music. Friday, on the other hand, is designed to get you in the party mood, and psyche you up for the coming debauchery that is our weekend warrior lifestyle over here. We do the Back To School Mondays. Tuesdays is our Theme Show. Jo Brooks, the lead singer of the band Feed the Boats, comes up with a theme for the show. And I beg, really beg, M-Town listeners to contribute to the show with the songs they think fit the theme. Please mention The First Alleyway, a fantastic restaurant in downtown Gwangju, they sponsor the Tuesday theme shows, and are responsible for making it such a success! On Wednesdays we look at a year in the history of western music, and play tracks from that year. Then Thursdays are my little homage to my sleeping companion, Jon Stewart. I take some current event news stories, and tie them to a Western song. ooh! And every Saturday, we work our way through the UK Top 40, if you want to know what’s hot in the British Isles, and are a fan of the TV show, The X Factor, you should definitely listen! AE: What has been the most fun/embarrassing/entertaining/memorable episode of M-Town thus far? T-man: I had this fantastic guest from Peru on our Sunday evening Com-
munity hour show, where members of the Gwangju community share the music that is important to them. And she was explaining a traditional dance in Peru, where the ladies tie a ribbon to the back of the outfit, so that it hangs down from their hips to below their buttocks, and they dance, moving their his from side to side. The male dancing partner follows them, and holds a candle beneath the ribbon - the theory is that the better the lady is at dancing, the longer the ribbon will remain unsinged by the candle. My guest, described the dance in vivid detail - but kept saying the word “ass”... she’s shaking her “ass”... The “ass” moves ...the faster she shakes her “ass”... etc. It was hilarious. The looks on my face, my other guest, who was from Guatemala, and my engineer... good times ...and I will never tell anyone that it was Celeste (you can print that though!) AE: Everyone in life is an artist, but that some of us just haven’t found the right brush yet. What do you consider to be your “art” or “brush” in this life? T-Man: Everyone is an artist? Well... I have a strict no dating “artists” rule, which probably explains my romantic luck. Just kidding, sorry. Umm... I guess - my philosophy on life is that we should all try to achieve our goals, and see to it that our goals do not lessen the chances of others to achieve theirs. The Golden rule probably says that less cryptically. And hell, goals don’t even have to be a tangible entity. Living life well is my goal, and it isn’t always easy - but if I could pick an “art,” - that would be mine. I would like the final testament on my deathbed to be “yeah, you did a good job this time around, not bad considering the instruction manual you got.” That would be my masterpiece.
Everyday I make this “snowman,” everday the snowman melts, and I have to make a new one. Sure - someone somewhere (hopefully) is enjoying the show, maybe I make their night a little easier, or more entertaining...
Vagina & Me
Amy Badenhorst & Leigh Hellman
The Vagina. We ladies use our vaginas every day. We were born with them. Our vaginas are our powerhouse. They are the difference between the X and the Y chromosome. We orgasm, bleed, and push babies out of these things. As a woman, did you ever think to give your vagina a certain style, a name, a personality? To dress it up or give it a voice? In 1996, American playwright and activist Eve Ensler did just that by writing a play called ‘The Vagina Monologues’. The Monologues came from a series of interviews Eve did with around 200 women about their views on sex, relationships, and violence against women. The interviews began as casual conversations with her friends, who then brought up anecdotes they themselves had been told by other friends; thus began a continuing chain of referrals. In an interview with women.com, Ensler said that her fascination with vaginas began because of “growing up in a violent society. Women’s empowerment is deeply connected to their sexuality.”
‘The Vagina Monologues’ has been translated into 48 languages and performed in over 140 countries. And now it is coming to Gwangju!
events and workshops focusing on building communities between the diverse female citizens of Gwangju, foreign and Korean alike. The campaign will also be an information hub The initiative is headed up by for those wanting to support Leigh Hellman, an English uni- the cause. Working alongside versity instructor and fellow Leigh is a dedicated team who Gwangju V-Warrior, who is will be facilitators during these passionate about the advocacy workshops and who will also be and action needed to instigate performing the various monodialogues about women’s issues logues. all over the world, particularly in her second home country of One strong theme of the MonoKorea. This is not your typical logues is a rally against violence stage production and includes towards women, and that strikes various other components lead- a poignant chord in Korea where ing up to the climax of perform- domestic violence is an unspoing the play for a live audience. ken but widely acknowledged ‘The Vagina Monologues’ is a reality perpetuated by archaic full-blown awareness project and unacceptable social codes. which includes fundraising Domestic violence is a shameful
This project is a powerful tool that we hope will build communities amongst all the people of Gwangju! topic that should be kept in the home. Even if you are beaten, you should shut up and suffer in silence. It’s not dignified to reveal that you are a victim of domestic violence. You are partly to blame for your abuse. These haunting choruses rise up from the country fields to the neonsplattered cityscapes. It is time to bring light to this and many other issues in a safe space for anyone who feels ready to come forward and speak about their experiences, opinions, and beautiful womanhood. This project is a powerful tool that we hope will build communities amongst all the people of Gwangju! Your support will not only be greatly appreciated, but it will also make a calculable difference as all proceeds from this project will be donated to a local women-focused charity! Please join our Facebook group ‘The Vagina Monologues in Gwangju’ or contact Leigh Hellman at gwangjuvwarriors@ gmail.com for more information!
photo by Daniel Jurco
Tonight I am a shattered shrimp Tonight I’d heard and not heard my father’s words interrupted by a sigh I’d seen and not seen a tick in the jaw a pair of gulleys between heavy lidded eyes I’d felt these things sliver across my consciousness and held them off with some dull witticism had laughed, had looked away and after a placid beat left lightly the room on the arched feet of the gallant A soft shut door, a calm crawl, supine before the springs that blithely bounced me room to room crept up from my soles and snapped at my spine
I curdled, I was a shamed shrimp I felt the tide rise I screamed at the tide rise, a vertical wall trembling at its peak then slamming down Underwater scream, unheard mouth full of knee The sea retreated through shut eyes Sprawling bits of shelled shrimp One disconnected eye watched on I furled my many salmon legs making shallow depressions in the mire Tonight I am a sunken shrimp Tonight I am a crier. by Hedgie Choi
photo by Christian Oey
Her Eyes for Nav
Her eyes the still water deep in the well Reflecting the cloudless sky, gossamer hues Silently gazing circled by glistening mahogany, Her eyes white like slowly falling snow, The white of snow-clouds and the snow-pack Up among brown branches on a clear morning, Her eyes smiling through laughing eyelids like the Wave of cool air that washes down on the Sticky summers day with the welcome rain,
In The Absence for Nav
I long for the quiet Moments together, the World stops and we are Together in the absence of Its concerns, we shed Our bonds and simply Exist in a place beyond The steady roll of time And the overreach of others.
Their gentle caresses that pull me in, Our eyes meet and Iâ€™m lost, My words, my thoughts, vanish; I lie beside her, her head on my shoulder, Her eyes meeting mine, a moment frozen in time.
by Matthew LaPlant
Real Inspector Hound Last December, Gwangju Performance Project put on a play, The Real Inspector Hound, a satirical murder mystery written by Tom Stoppard. It ran for five shows, and nearly sold all of its 300 seats. This was a truly collaborative effort. It gave people of various backgrounds an opportunity to share their creative gifts and contribute to a unique artistic endeavor. The entire Gwangju foreign community (and also a great number of Korean contributors) share the credit for this wonderful achievement. In addition to the core acting and directing team, they found volunteers for set design, sound and lights, ticket distribution, advertising, and countless other jobs. This show was a perfect example of the enormous potential that can be uncovered right here in Gwangju. The team will soon be preparing for their next production, and those interested in either helping out, or just coming to see the show, should check out www.gwangjutheatre.com. .
by Travis Major
The Ju Flea Market The first JU flea market was held on Saturday Nov. 19th at the rainbow cultural center in Youngbong market. The turnout was stellar for the first of many markets to happen in our fair city of Gwangju. There were 12 vendors selling their goodâ€™s. There was wine tasting, gourmet coffees, hotdogs, pancakes, and shots, and that was just the food stands. Things were being sold from baby cloths to books, games to guitars. The turnout for customers was about what was to be expected as the weather did not want to help us that day and there was also a (impromptu) mandatory meeting for foreigners at city hall. So what does this mean for the next JU? That just means it can only get better. With more spots open for sellers and more people knowing about it, *wink wink* we know we will see you there. So please stay tune for the JU-2, listen on GFN radio and also watch for all the invites on Facebook. We hope to see you there.
by Matthew Rehrig
Art Elemento Issue Cinco January 2012