News / Art

Hayward Gallery announces new show by Korean artist Lee Bul


Lee Bul: Cravings (1989) Outdoor performance, Jang Heung, Korea.
Courtesy: Studio Lee Bul

Southbank Centre’s Hayward Gallery is to become the home of a new solo exhibition by South Korean artist Lee Bul.

Lee Bul: Crashing will run 30 May–19 August 2018. The exhibition is to take a backwards look at Lee’s work to date from the past three decades as well as showing new work including a series of silk velvet paintings and an installation commissioned by the gallery for the show.

The work shown in Crashing will span Lee Bul’s provocative multi-dimensional practise from painting to sculpture, performance to installation inspired by, among other things, science fiction, architecture, bioengineering, urbanism and futurism as well as the history and politics of her native Korea.

Ralph Rugoff who is director at the Hayward Gallery commented, “We are particularly delighted to present this pioneering artist during the Hayward’s 50th anniversary year. Lee Bul’s ongoing engagement with utopian modernism pairs perfectly with the democratic aspirations of the Hayward’s own adventurous architecture. The special site-specific commission that she will be creating will strikingly transform the exterior of the building in a manner that is both pointed in its historical references and visually charged.”

The exhibition’s curator Stephanie Rosenthal added, “Through this exhibition we hope to take visitors on a journey of utopian exploration; the show is designed to transport the visitors to another reality, place and time. I am particularly interested in the way Lee Bul’s work addresses both the aspirations of democracy and its potential failure and I think approaching these topics is more relevant than ever today.”

The exhibition is due to coincide with the gallery’s 50th anniversary.


Lee Bul: Sorry for suffering–You think I’m a puppy on a picnic? (1990)
12-day performance, Kimpo Airport, Narita Airport, downtown Tokyo, Dokiwaza Theater, Tokyo.
Courtesy: Studio Lee Bul


Lee Bul: Civitas Solis II, 2014
Installation view of exhibition, “MMCA Hyundai Motor Series 2014: Lee Bul,” National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Korea, 2014-15.
© Lee Bul / Photo: Jeon Byung-cheo / Courtesy: National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Korea


Lee Bul: Cyborg W1-W4, 1998
View of work in production, cast silicone, polyurethane filling, paint pigment, dimensions variable
Photo: Yoon Hyung-moon / Courtesy: Studio Lee Bul


Lee Bul: Willing To Be Vulnerable, 2015-16
Installation view of the 20th Biennale of Sydney, 2016.
Photo: Algirdas Bakas / Courtesy: Studio Lee Bul