Attempt to label Korean artist Beomsik Won and you’ll be baffled. He photographs but he’s not a photographer, he designs buildings but he’s not an architect, he constructs three-dimensional collages but he’s not a sculptor. As baffling are the images from his Archisculpture Photo Project, which are digitally manipulated photographs of non-existent, fantastical buildings that appear to be real. This surreal sensation stems from two conditions seen in the work: the use of photos of existing buildings as source material—taken from Won’s vast collection which he has single-handedly compiled with his camera walking around London where he studied at the Slade School of Fine Art and on his trips around the world—and their conceptually astute and graphically immaculate execution.
Won’s process is one of deconstruction and reconstruction. Divided into two chapters, Collage and Antigravity—the latter depicting composites of precarious balance and structural incongruities—and placed in isolation on fields or parks with a low-lying horizon, his architectural constructs are monumental edifices that encapsulate the entirety of the city, era or style its components are drawn from. But more than that, they are a visionary take on the way we live now and a testament to the artist’s unbridled imagination. Yatzer talked to the artist about his photo project, his artistic vision and his interest in philosophy.