Gallery Zero: Feng-Ru Lee

Gallery Zero is a platform for collectives of artists, creators, makers and agitators to develop practice and engage with audiences through the notion of collaboration. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Gallery Zero remains closed and our residency programme continues to be on hold. In light of this, we offered shortlisted residency applicants the opportunity to platform their work online. Over the next couple of the months, we’ll be uploading their submissions.

The short-film, Yeondoo was made during Feng-Ru Lee’s HTE (Here, There, Everywhere) residency exchange program between Boan1942, Seoul and New Art Exchange, Nottingham.

Yeondoo and Milee the Sheep (an alter ego inspired by Dolly the Sheep, the first animal to be cloned from an adult somatic cell in 1996) met both as residents staying at Boan1942. As the first cloned dog in South Korea, it established the country’s position in cloning history and the world’s race in genetic cloning. Holding these shared interests, Yeondoo and Milee The Sheep went for a walk around Gyeongbokgung Palace and the National Palace of Korea in Seoul. Alongside the 4-walls of the palaces, the walk gradually unfolds changes in the cityscape from cultural centres, residential areas, traditional markets, tourist attractions, business centres, security cautious presidential buildings, all merging into a daily walk, juxtaposed with the somewhat bizarre activity taking place. The Panmunjom Declaration was signed between South and North Korea on 27 April 2018, two days after this walk took place, at this time both nations pledged to consent to a peace treaty, formally ending the Korean War.

Feng-Ru Lee’s practice is rooted in her Far-East Asian Cultural background, her work crosses a range of different media and often-incorporates video, two dimensional works, performance and installation. Toying with ideas of mass production and genetic engineering, Lee’s practice is often seen as both a critique and an attempt to understand the seemingly controversial issues involved in the state of the contemporary human condition. Lee explores ideas that centre on the status of the transition/migration between cultures and humanity, whilst also addressing notions of the materialisation of objects and beings. Subjects such as Eastern philosophy and Western science that seem immediately differential hold intrinsically deep and thought provoking issues for both the artist and viewer.

Lee has exhibited throughout the UK, Taiwan and internationally including the USA, Middle East, Japan, and across Europe. She was the winner of the prestigious Taipei Prize in 2000. In 2001 she represented Taipei, Taiwan in an artist residency programme between Taipei and Jerusalem. Lee has also completed residencies in Berlin and recently at the New Art Gallery Walsall. Recent exhibitions have included: Flux Fest at VIVID, Birmingham, Jam: Cultural Congestions in Contemporary Asian Art at South Hills Park, Shift Time - The Festival of Ideas in Sherwsbury and a joint Solo Exhibition at Entrance Gallery in Prague, Czech Republic.

Feng-Ru Lee on Instagram