Ziwon Wang (Born 1980, South Korea, currently lives and works in Seoul, South Korea)
Ziwon Wang’s cybernetic sculptures poignantly address the increasingly fused relationship between man and technology. The human features and limbs of Wang’s ‘post-human’ or ‘post-person’ sculptures hold serene and meditative expressions and positions, that are then juxtaposed against the disjointed mechanical components. This jarring spectacle questions human and religious identity in an evolving and increasingly technological world. Despite their evident machinery however, the pieces retain an element of quiet humanity, and appear to live and breathe with movement.
At the core of Wang’s work is the question of decision-making – the emotive human decisions against the coded and systematic judgments made by machines. The works are concerned with the status of human thought, and how it might transgress or progress with the future of technology. The manifestation of this interest in the passage of time can be found in the poses of the human figures, that call to mind images of the Buddha, and other religious figures, in a way that seems to question whether advancement of machinery and technology has changed the fundamental elements of human life.
The characteristic face of the figures that is repeated throughout, and referred to rather ominously as ‘Z’, is in fact a self-portrait. The combinations of these very human features, and the machinery, as well as making an interesting juxtaposition, are also derived from the three stages of cybernetics. Wang is particularly interested in the stage of the cyborg, robots being able to take on roles in the human body, such as artificial limbs. Wang is therefore challenging the perception that the moral, unique, and individualized nature of humans is being lost with the advancement of artificial intelligence.
Ziwon Wang graduated from Chungan University in Seoul, Korea with BA and MA in Sculpture in 2007. He was awarded the Song Eun Award in 2010 and selected for The National Art Studio residency programme 2011 in Korea. Wang’s works have been collected in many public collections such as the Seoul City Museum of Art and Incheon City’s Department of Finance, as well as co-operate institutions as Art Bank Korea and Kolon Tower. Wang has exhibited in New York, Tokyo, Mumbai, Beijing, Hong Kong and Amsterdam.