Images of the world as seen through the eyes of teenagers and interpreted through their inner ego will be exhibited at the “Time Traveller Turns Photographer” being held at the Insa Art Center in Gwanhun-dong, Jongno-gu, Seoul from January 21 to 29. The exhibition, which will present 120 photos accompanied by short essays, will be a unique event that showcases through photos the interior world of ordinary middle and high school students.
The exhibition will feature photos by a total of 58 participants in the starting class of the “Time Traveller” program, all of whom are middle school second graders through high school first graders in the Seoul metropolitan region.
The “Time Traveller” program was organized by Doosan as part of its CSR activities in July last year with a view to enriching the emotions of teenagers. The program was aimed at middle school second grade through high school first grade students in Seoul. Many of the participants were teenagers who had difficulties in discovering their own identity and enriching their emotions due to their underprivileged household environment and surroundings. The objective of the program was to enable the students to reflect on themselves through the medium of photography, and realize their own value while learning about their relationship with their surroundings, thereby establishing a positive view of the world.
The 58 students in the first round of the program discovered and developed perspectives of their own, from which to examine and interpret the world, on a course that enabled them to take photos by themselves while attending twenty lessons provided by professionals, including photographers Jung-man Kim and Bien-U Bae, over the past six months. They also engaged in discussions about various themes including history, beauty, and co-existence, and toured various places corresponding to the themes of their dialogue in and around Seoul.
The instructors said that the photographic works produced by the students boasted a degree of artistic quality that exceeded their expectations. There are especially notable photos among the students’ artworks depicting “time,” “space,” and “people”: a piece in which the photographer refers to himself the “Invisible Man” shows his feet as he stood alone, isolated from other people; an image of a laundry line with only a man’s clothes hanging on it with a caption read “It would be nice if Mr. Lonely also had a family”; an image of a manhole lid, which is captioned “Someone steps on the manhole lid, and others just pass by as if they did not see it. Still others spit on it. This looks lonesome to me. And this is also beautiful”; and a photo of the cosmos under blue skies captioned “I would likely to open up my wings into the blue skies over the pink petals. I am a dreaming larva.”
The opening ceremony of the exhibition, which kicked off at 5 p.m. on January 21, introduces photos and essays by teenagers in the format of an open radio show hosted by the singer Gi-ha Jang, and revisit the meaning of the “Time Traveller” project. Singer Harim will sing congratulatory songs at the ceremony. Photographers Bien-U Bae, and Jung-man Kim, and dancer Eun-me Ahn, who are advisory members of the program, will also attend the event.
A Doosan official said, “It was very rewarding to see the students, who had become more enlightened and had learned about the meaning of life on their own by broadening their view of the world,” adding, “We will expand the program to allow more teenagers to take part in it.”
Title: Invisible man: “It has been already 40 minutes since I started waiting for my friend, leaning on an empty wall outside a restroom…. I am an invisible man whom people just pass by without bothering to look at. I am an invisible man whom you may be waiting for.”
Title: Aloneness: It seems that one person is living here. The laundry line looks empty. He would be alone, not just in the laundry line. He will be alone at the meal table and in bed. It would be nice if a woman’s clothing and a child’s clothing were hanging on the laundry line.
Title: “I”: Someone steps on the manhole lid, and others just pass by as if they did not see it. Still others spit on it. This looks lonesome to me. And this is also beautiful”