Archaeology of Adoption

Thanks to the K@W list for this announcement.  GS

Archaeology of Adoption
August 27 – September 24, 2008
Gallery Korea, Korean Cultural Service
460 Park Avenue @57th ST, New York, NY

Opening Reception with the Artists: Wednesday, September 3, 6-8pm

The world was not created once and for all time for each of us
individually. There are added to it in the course of our life things
of which we have never had any suspicion.

-Marcel Proust

Dear Friends,

AHL Foundation – a not-for- profit arts foundation – is proud
to present Archaeology of Adoption, an Exhibition for Korean Adoptee
Artists. AHL attempts to focus on artists who deal with relatively
relegated issues through their experience as Korean adoptees. This
exhibition addresses the issue of adoption, something the artists
have taken for granted, and shares it with audiences who may not have
thought about it. Moreover, adoption, in itself, jeopardizes all the
social constructs on memory, nostalgia, and on what composes a
family. The artists in this exhibition raise questions such as how
one can trace something that they never experienced or whether
nostalgia for a specific place could be strong to those who had spent
a very short time there.

The issue of adoption has been marginalized in the postcolonial
and identity political discourse. Identity as a Korean adoptee is on
the border of established racial, national, and cultural boundaries.
Artists in this exhibition challenge all kinds of accepted notions
that we take for granted and also, never give up. Furthermore, the
artists tackle what can be called blind spots in discussing the issue
of adoption. Maya Weimer interviews Korean birth mothers, who
abandoned their own children, transforming it into video work with
images while the identities of the women are hidden. Jane Jin Kaisen
explores the way adoption has conveyed Orientalism as Asian babies
were regarded as the exotic Other. Jung Woo Lim, a director, made a
documentary film of an adoptee, following his travel to Korea in
order to meet his birth family. Jette Hye Jin Mortensen shows a mock
documentary, where she juxtaposes archival images of the Danish
composer Carl Nielsen with those of her great grandfather. We bring
in other adoptee artists who challenge all the established notions
including identity and nationality.

Marcel Proust said “Only through art can we emerge from ourselves and
know what another person sees.” AHL Foundation tries to make an
opportunity for the public to encounter a new experience through this
exhibition, and an opportunity for the adoptee artists to communicate
their messages and experiences with the public.

We would like to request your support in providing this opportunity
to the artists of this exhibition. Your participation and sponsorship
would be greatly appreciated. The names of donors, regardless of the
amount, will be printed inside the Exhibition Catalogue. (the
catalogue dead line is July 30,2008)
Please send your donation to:
AHL Foundation, Inc.
545 Asharoken Ave.
Northport, NY 11768

If you have any questions or would like additional information,
please contact Eunyoung Kang at 646-201-5398 or


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