Blow Up – Utopia
Seung Woo Back / 백승우
Seung Woo Back discloses the unfamiliar within reality, distant from dichotomies between reality and unreality, existence and imagination. In Blow Up he questions our conventional attitude about reality being visible . He suggests the visible is not all that is reality.
Reality censored or reality exaggerated: which is closer to the real or the unreal?
Seung Woo Back’s Utopia/Blow up questions the meticulously sanitized and manipulated image of North Korean reality. Blow up is a series based on enlargements of the photographer’s film that was confiscated and censured by the North Korean government on a trip to Pyeongyang. By obsessively zooming in on what was censured and forbidden, these photographs ironically emphasize the reality that North Korean officials were so anxious to hide. Utopia is based on the same concept but takes the opposite approach, exaggerating and embellishing the utopian image of North Korea as depicted in North Korean propaganda photographs. The exaggerated nature of these photographs ironically emphasize the dystopian reality of North Korea, thus calling into question the reality of photographic evidence.
Seung Woo Back was born in 1973, in Daejon, Korea.
Since its foundation in 2007, Iann has organised a variety of projects ranging from the publication of the contemporary art photography magazine to curating exhibitions, publishing books, and running educational programs.