Young-jun Tak

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Once in a While 03
Once in a While (Detail), 2022

Twelve wooden white asparaguses are resting in a rusty metal basket, the tops of three of them are metamorphosed into young male heads bearing expressions of both agony and ecstasy. Used to present a variety of seasonal produce by road side vendors and on traditional markets, the basket, originally made of lightweight willow chips, is as iconic as its content.

A pair of white asparagus, hand-carved in lime wood by a 13th-generation Bavarian wood carving master, is held by a metal ring. The wooden sculptures have partly metamorphosed, with young male heads sprouting and staring up in awe. The facial expressions suggest a longing for something, perhaps a miracle or affection, but the desire remains ambiguous, suspended between the communion of the miniature figures. White asparagus or Spargel came to Europe from Asia, the Middle East and Northern Africa, the beloved seasonal vegetable is annually harvested from springtime until the 24th of June, the summer s ...

Miracles (Detail), 2022

Six Miracles consists of six almost identical figures depicting the Baby Jesus. The surfaces are covered with homphobic pamphlets from Christian groups in South Korea, advocating conversion therapy and other hate speech. The base of the figures are made by traditional Italian artisans.

Young jun Tak 9
Holy Water, 2022

Holy Water combines a holy water stoup hand-carved in Veronese yellow marble and a hyper-realistic silicone nipple cast of the artist’s chest. Stoups hold blessed water for believers to dip their fingers in and sanctify themselves, and by doing so, it is believed that one can purify the uncleanliness of daily life. The severed breast is a common Christian motif: the breasts of Saint Agatha of Sicily were cut off by pincers, and their placement on a plate has been reproduced as art, relics and even desserts.