Hein-kuhn Oh

b. 1963, born and based in Seoul, Korea. www.heinkuhnoh.com

Oh studied photography at the Brooks Institute of Photography, CA, and photography and cinema at Ohio University, OH. Oh’s photograph series of singers, actors, middle-aged married women, girls, and Gwnagju story are not far removed from the traditional black and white portrait form. However, instead of taking portraits of the subjects as they look, he captures their exaggerate poses and expressions, and he even captures their self-consciousness and their intentional ‘acting’.

The series of Gwangju Story, is not documentary photographs of the citizen’s historical uprising at the city, but the ones of amateur voluntary actors acting at the set of a film on the Uprising(titled Petal). More interesting fact is that the fictive film set was actually built in the real historical background, and at this point, the dual play of fiction and reality gets even more complicated. His photographs seem circulating in a chain of fiction and non-fiction, reproduction and reality like in the Mobius strip. This would be the reason for Oh’s photographs, in spite of their brilliantly realistic details of the object, are suspended in taut tension amid the gap between the self and the viewer, the observed and the observer.

- Hein-kuhn Oh, Father, Son and Daughter, Sept 28 1995, Gelatin Silver Print, 68x68cm  

- Hein-kuhn Oh, A high school student acting as a soldier on a fake tank, Sept 28, 1995, Gelatin Silver Print, 68x68cm

- Hein-kuhn Oh, Four Actors Waving a Korean National Flag, Sept 28, 1995, Gelatin Silver Print, 68x68cm