Mire Lee: Black Sun


The New Museum will present the first American solo museum exhibition of the work of Mire Lee (b. 1988, Seoul, South Korea).

Cover Image:

“Mire Lee: Black Sun,” 2023. Exhibition view: New Museum, New York. Photo: Dario Lasagni

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Installed in the New Museum’s Fourth Floor gallery, “Mire Lee: Black Sun” will debut a new site-specific installation featuring an architectural environment, kinetic sculpture and fabric works. Composed of materials that include low-tech motors, pumping systems, steel rods, and PVC hoses filled with grease, glycerin, silicone, slip, and oil, Lee’s animatronic sculptures operate both like living organisms and biological machines. Drawing references from architecture, horror, pornography, and cybernetics, and evoking bodily functions and environmental decay, Lee offers a visceral means to describe properties that exist between the realms of the technological and the corporeal. Titled after Julia Kristeva’s 1987 book Black Sun—a study of depression and melancholia—Lee’s installation is led by concerns of space, atmosphere, and materials including fabric, steel, and clay to suggest emotional voids and psychological tensions. In the past year, Lee has had institutional solo exhibitions at MMK Frankfurt and Kunstmuseum Den Haag, Netherlands, and has participated in major international exhibitions including the 59th International Art Exhibition of the Venice Biennale, the 58th Carnegie International, and Busan Biennial 2022.

“Mire Lee: Black Sun” is curated by Gary Carrion-Murayari, Kraus Family Senior Curator, and Madeline Weisburg, Curatorial Assistant.

The exhibition is accompanied by a fully illustrated catalogue published by the New Museum, including a conversation between the artist and Gary Carrion-Murayari as well as texts by Wong Binghao, Kim Eon Hee, Florentina Holzinger, and Madeline Weisburg.

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This exhibition is part of a three-year initiative, launched in collaboration with Kvadrat, to premiere ambitious new productions by emerging artists.

Support for this exhibition is provided by the Toby Devan Lewis Emerging Artists Exhibitions Fund.

Artist commissions are generously supported by the Neeson / Edlis Artist Commissions Fund.

We gratefully acknowledge the International Leadership Council of the New Museum.

Generous support is provided by:
Samsung Foundation of Culture
Mondriaan Fund
Liza Mauer
Abbie and Patrick Dean
Miyoung Lee and Neil Simpkins
Salle Yoo and Jeff Gray

This program is supported as part of the Dutch Culture USA program by the Consulate General of the Netherlands in New York.

This exhibition is made possible with the support of Ministry of Culture, Sports & Tourism of Korea, Korea Arts Management Service, and the grant program Fund for Korean Art Abroad.

Additional support is provided by:
AHL Foundation
Dr. Disaphol Chansiri
Evan Chow
Peter Kahng
Lisa Kim and Eunu Chun
Younghee Kim-Wait
Laurie Wolfert
Rosina Lee Yue

Special thanks to the Artemis Council of the New Museum.

Thanks to Tina Kim Gallery, New York.

Education and community programs for our Summer Exhibitions are supported, in part, by the American Chai Trust.

Support for the publication has been provided by the J. McSweeney and G. Mills Publications Fund at the New Museum.

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