Bohnchang Koo creates wonderfully quiet, elegant photographs in these two related series, Vessel and Interiors.
In the Vessel photographs, rare white porcelain ceramics of the Korean Joseon Dynasty (1392-1910) are isolated or arranged in groups on white textured Japanese rice paper, and illuminated with an overall soft white light. The focus is soft, too, with a very narrow depth of field. Koo uses a 4 x 5 film camera to make these long exposure images, and then prints them with just whispers of pigment on white Japanese paper, resulting in nearly weightless white-on-white prints that are lovely — and worthy of meditative contemplation.
These objects that he chooses to photograph represent a long, peaceful history of Korea’s centuries-old Confucian culture — austere, not flashy, but appreciated for their simple, unadorned beauty.
A similar philosophy underpins the Interiors, which are photographs of empty white rooms or boxes, bathed in soft, even light. Empty, but not quite empty — open to interpretations and dreams and appreciation for even the light layers of dust that collect in a corner of a room.
— Jim Casper