Korean sculptor Young-Deok Seo creates imposing figurative sculptures using tightly knit configurations of welded bicycle chains and industrial steel chains. While impressive in their intricacy and the apparent skill required to create them, the artwork’s titles such as Infection – Anguish, Infection – Ego, and Addict, suggest the rippled surface created by the materials is not an arbitrary decision. These are figures of individuals in despair, pockmarked with disease, the chains acting as a metaphor for the human condition.
A statement from his past show:
Seo Young Deok’s work aims to reflect the disease-like contamination we experience caused by materials in our society, he hopes to reveal the amount of suffering it places on the modern-day human. To express this, he utilized metal chains to create the modern man. Chains were made by our civilization and created through mass production, yet it is also just one accessory, one part in a massive piece of machinery. He considered each part of the chain a human cell and used the chains to create a human figure. Thus, this being’s form has been created in contamination by materials in our current world.