Dongwook Lee

Location: Seoul
Nationality: South Korea
Biography: Born in 1973 in South Korea and lives and works in Seoul, South Korea. He graduated Hankuk University of Foreign Studies, majored in Chinese. Self-taught photographer, until his middle-30’s he worked for numerous fashion magazines and... read on
Public Story
Credits: dongwook lee
Updated: 02/21/20
Location: Paju

-struggle in a daily life like a war

“Wozu” is a german word which means “what for”

As seen in the Plato’s allegory of the cave, all of us are constantly caught between fictions and realities, battling on the thin line between pleasure and pain. 

“Wozu” is a series that show the states of inner collision among scared egos –individuals that want to look away from the truth and who,  despite the clamor of voices around them, remain largely silent.

In an endless circle of life and death—born in and cross the water to breathe his last breath—humans have been searching for the reasons for the existence and resisted the world and self-made limitations.

The water in this project represents a death of the physical body, and at the same time, of the soul driven to despair. The peaceful but violent attribute of water is very similar with that of human being, I articulate the collision between egos through the mix of water and human body.

Humans are often depicted as fruits fallen off the trees in the Norse mythology. Likewise, the story of Babel tower, in which the tower is reminiscent of a tall tree, seems to describe a human challenge against God as well as a desperate struggle to climb the tower to find the origin.

We, the defective human beings, live by floating the world of chaos. The incessant questions derived from chaos might be the reason or signification of our existence.

Project “Wozu” originated in the bizarre and mystic image of myself reflected in the water. These sentences written right after sudden awaken from sleep, opened the starting point of my work.

Reflected myself in water, and there was a stranger. I wish he disappeared tomorrow.