Joeun Aatchim: Souvenirs
A site-specific installation by artist Joeun Aatchim from NYU Steinhardt's BFA in Studio Art.
March 20- April 30, 2014
Color blinds. Souvenirs provokes awareness of the forgotten wartime violations that occurred during WWII. After finding some “beautifully hand-colored”souvenir postcards from the colonial era while traveling through Insadong, a reasonably popular tourist town in Korea, Joeun Aatchim started investigating the darker currents embedded withinthe deceptive beauty of these seemingly banal, “antique,” commoditized images.These pictures revealed the cruelty of wartime crimes, like the Comfort Stations--military brothels that systemically drafted girlsfrom thecolonieswho were under the rule of the Imperial Japanese Army during the war.The history of the Comfort Stations continues to be neglected despite the tireless efforts of the victims to reveal the truth.
By altering these images, Aatchim hopes tobring up a variety of uneasy tensions within these “lovely,” hand-pigmented visual commodities, and to make an indelible record of these abuses by pairing these images with personal testimonies from women who survived sexual slavery during wartime.She wants the viewer to consider the fallibility of the historical archive, which often leads tothe denial of historic truth.