material intelligence

As designers, we must comet to see that materials are just as important as the concepts that we generate. Each material embodies a different characteristic and each material by generation is different. Wood in itself carries thousands of characteristics that in most people’s mind is set to be hard and rugged. But check out the woodwork by Korean artist Cha Jong Rye. She defies wood and their preconceived perceptions and transforms them into a material that is fluid like fabric or even water.

Korean sculptor Cha Jong-Rye works with wood as if it were clay or paint. She layers and sands hundreds of delicate wood pieces to create pockmarked canvases, threatening beds of thorns, or wall-sized recreations of crumpled cloth napkins. Jong-Rye completed her graduate work at Ewha Women’s University in Seoul in 1996 and has had numerous group exhibits and five solo shows, her latest at the Sungkok Art Museum. I am completely hypnotized by these sculptures and in total awe of the painstaking craft on display here. If you like this, you might also enjoy the work of Ben Butler.

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