Wednesday, September 21, 2022

he Sylvia Wald & Po Kim Gallery, Jung Hee Choi in conversation with La Monte Young and Megan Witko, Friday, September 30th, 6pm

Jung Hee Choi in conversation with La Monte Young and Megan Witko

Friday, September 30th, 6pm
The Sylvia Wald & Po Kim Gallery
417 Lafayette Street, 2nd Floor, NYC
Jung Hee Choi will discuss her work and process with the legendary artist La Monte Young and Dia curator Megan Witko, who has worked closely with both Choi and Young on all of their Dia projects since 2015.

For over twenty years, Choi has studied and collaborated with La Monte Young and Marian Zazeela on many art, music and life studies projects. Choi states, "This conversation will provide insight into our unique and life-long collaboration, which is a profound means of continuing our art practice into the future beyond the lifetime of the artist."

The talk will contextualize Choi’s sound work and music practice, providing an in-depth focus on her long series of Environmental Compositions, presented with various media including video, evolving light-point patterns, drawings, incense, performance and sound, invoking the concept of Manifest Unmanifest. 

This conversation is organized in conjunction with Jung Hee Choi's current exhibition Manifest, Unmanifest XII, on view at SWPK through September 30, 2022.
Jung Hee Choi is an artist and musician who works in video, performance, sound and multimedia installations. Her work has been presented in the United States, Europe, and Asia including FRAC Franche-Comté, France; Berliner Festspiele, Bundeskunsthalle, Germany; Dia Art Foundation, Guggenheim Museum and MELA Foundation Dream Houses, NYC; FRESH Festival, Bangkok; Korea Experimental Arts Festival. Choi is the senior disciple of La Monte Young and Marian Zazeela with the traditional Kirana gandha bandh red-thread ceremony taking place in 2003. In 2002 she co-founded, with Young and Zazeela, The Just Alap Raga Ensemble and has performed as a vocalist in every concert. Choi’s electroacoustic and modal improvisation ensemble, The Sundara All Star Band, premiered in 2015. The members include Young, Zazeela, Choi, Jon Catler, Hansford Rowe and Naren Budhkar. The New York Times listed Choi’s Tonecycle for Blues performed by her Sundara All Star Band as one of The Best Classical Music Performances of 2017. Since 2009 Choi’s long-term multimedia installations have been presented both solo and simultaneously with Young and Zazeela’s sound and light in the MELA Dream House creating a continuous collaborative environment. 
La Monte Young pioneered the concept of extended time durations in 1957 and for over 60 years contributed extensively to the development of just intonation and rational number-based tuning systems in his performance works and the periodic composite sound waveform environments of the Dream House collaborations formulated in 1962 with Marian Zazeela. Presentations of his work in the U.S. and Europe, as well as his theoretical writings gradually had a wide-ranging influence on contemporary music, art and philosophy, including Minimalism, concept art, Fluxus, performance art and conceptual art. In L.A. in the '50s, Young played jazz saxophone, leading a group with Billy Higgins, Dennis Budimir and Don Cherry. He also played with Eric Dolphy, Ornette Coleman, Terry Jennings, Don Friedman, and Tiger Echols. At Yoko Ono’s studio in 1960 he was director of the first New York loft concert series. He was the editor of An Anthology, which with his Compositions 1960 became a primary influence on concept art and the Fluxus movement. In 1962 Young founded his group The Theatre of Eternal Music and embarked on The Tortoise, His Dreams and Journeys, a large work involving improvisation within strict predetermined guidelines. Young and Zazeela helped bring renowned master vocalist Pandit Pran Nath to the U.S. in 1970 and became his first Western disciples. Described by Mark Swed in his October 2009 Los Angeles Times blog as "pure vibratory magic," Young’s Just Alap Raga Ensemble, founded in 2002 with Zazeela and their senior  disciple Jung Hee Choi, has become his primary performance vehicle. "For the past quarter of a century he has been the most influential composer in America.  Maybe in the world." (Los Angeles Herald Examiner, 1985).  "As the acknowledged father of minimalism and guru emeritus to the British art-rock school, his influence is pervasive" (Musician magazine, 1986).  "Young is now widely recognized as the originator of the most influential classical music style of the final third of the twentieth century." (Strickland, Minimalism:Origins, 1993).  "La Monte Young:  Le Son du Siècle." (L’Express L’An 2000 Supplement, 1999).  

Megan Holly Witko is an external curator at Dia Art Foundation and currently working on an exhibition of work by the artist Chryssa. She recently organized presentations of works by Marian Zazeela at Dia Beacon, as well as Keith Sonnier and Jacqueline Humphries at the Dan Flavin Art Institute in Bridgehampton, NY. She was assistant curator of François Morellet at Dia Chelsea in New York (2017–18), as well as Robert Ryman (2015-16), and La Monte Young, Marian Zazeela and Jung Hee Choi’s Dia 15 VI 13 545 West 22 Street Dream House (2015). She joined Dia Art Foundation in 2012. 
Manifest, Unmanifest XII is produced in collaboration with the Donghwa Cultural Foundation and is sponsored in part by the MELA Foundation.
Header image: La Monte Young and Jung Hee Choi at Jung Hee Choi’s Ahata Anahata, Manifest Unmanifest XI, MELA Foundation Dream House, New York, 2020.

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