Fresh green trees and a clear blue sky, a warm breeze and a light herbal scent – Spring is in the air at Miju Lee’s and Grip Face’s„Offline Shelter“. They have spent the last 3 months together – in an atelier near Palma de Mallorca – to prepare their first exhibition in Paris.
Supported by the Colección SOLO (Madrid) and La BIBI gallery (Palma de Mallorca) the two artists knew each other long before. Both met on Instagram, when Grip Face (Spain, 1989) reached out to Miju Lee (South Korea, 1982) to discuss art, their aesthetics and owning a little, white dog – all subjects they had in common.
However, both of them never met during their simultaneously spent time in Barcelona. And when Grip Face was offered this exhibition, he immediately suggested to do it in collaboration with Miju Lee.
What will be the luxury of tomorrow? – „To be disconnected“ is the answer they both share.
Since then, the atelier is filled with yetis, mushrooms and butterflies. They inhabit the paintings both are working on close before the exhibition. Some in creative and executing cooperation, others separated yet well discussed. „If I want to add something to his picture, I ask him first“ explains Miju Lee about their workflow. Both play with themes such as gender, identity and digital anxiety throughout their careers. Makes sense to cooperate. And from their joined forces they not only want to learn from one another, but also gain the experience of living and creating with another artist – which is an art project itself.
One that lives with them in the atelier is Miju Lee’s Yeti – a recurring motif in her paintings and sculptures. „One time“, she explaines, „I dreamed of becoming an animal… I woke up immediately and saw my hands still covered in fur. Since then, the yeti is always with me. Like an alter ego, I paint him over and over again. He has no face, therefore cannot expose any emotions.“ For all paintings except one, that is. There, standing on a shelf, Grip Face gave the yeti two black dots – for he received a face.
This particular shelf-painting is a perfect example for their collaboration – both imagined what they would collect in the Metaverse and together they filled the shelf with ice cream, a mask, a penis made by an A.I, a parrot…
Grip Face, who’s real name is David Oliver, usually starts his paintings on the computer. He tests different forms and colours before he brings them onto the canvas. With this back and forth between canvas and computer programs, his works become a puzzle of the digital and the analogue.
For Miju Lee and Grip Face to be disconnected will be the luxury of tomorrow (or even now?). Hence the title of their exhibition – both were looking for a place to disconnect from the digital and the society and reconnect with nature and themselves. Next to the paintings and sculptures are two big beds, a small kitchen, clothes, two skateboards, and a guitar in the window frame – overlooking the wide landscape of Mallorca. Their whole place feels wholesome & peaceful… the perfect Offline Shelter.
Do you want to connect with Miju Lee and Grip Face in real life?
The exhibition FIND AN OFFLINE SHELTER will be on view from the 12th to 20th of May at Galerie Joseph in Paris:
Monday to Saturday (12-19H)
7. RUE FROISSART
LE MARAIS, PARIS
Pictures – PR
Text – Simon Riepe