Augstin Berque, a French geographer, says what we perceive as a landscape is the thing which we have learned before. We are educated how to see the scenery through paintings and poetry. If we look at something with no concern, what we perceive is just only an environment. Basically there is no landscape in a vast nature. Someone accidentally finds beauty and fabulousness within nature. While it spreads as a culture, the image is ingrained in people’s mind.
Once people take a picture of landscape, it is like they imitate the image which was created by someone else. It becomes a stereotypical picture and the image is to be something that we have seen somewhere.
I don’t mean we should go to the ends of the earth where nobody has ever visited just for taking pictures. I have been wondering if it is possible to find a new image in familiar places that no one has ever seen before. Under the concept of searching unknown world in familiar places with photography, I started my art works, ‘Zen’s planet.’
My photographic objects are just ordinary things, simple and general like a manhole cover, a blacktop road surface or weeds in the empty lot. I observe the object from various angles as if I would discover a new planet. I try to educe a new image from there and I call it a ‘to-be-landscape’ image. I wonder people might be excited when they found such beautiful scenery in nature for the first time. I want people to relive the same excitement from my artworks.
‘Zen’s planet’, that is a photographic project that I look for a new world with new angle. It is like a probing planet. I will keep searching for a special view which no one has ever found before.