Humans have endeavored to reveal the truth within the myths of creation for a long period of time in all ages and countries. People have attempted to decipher the secret of creation within a context of genius and madness, effort and diligence, Romanticism and Realism. Yet, as for collecting, we question what kind of a secret lies in an act of loving, longing, and eventually collecting a work of art. That is the question this exhibition of furniture design Affaire de Coeur co-hosted by Lee Eugean Gallery and Rudolf Ruegg, a Switzerland-based designer and collector, would like to ask for the audiences.
There are probably various reasons as to why people purchase and collect art work - because of their acquaintance with the artist, or it has investment value. However, it is not that only the rich who buy art. Perhaps, there are plenty of people who had experiences of falling in love with a certain piece of art that they just had discovered in an exhibition when they were still poor students doing part-time jobs to pay their tuition. What about the experiences of buying a postcard or poster of the piece - out of sheer desire to own the work – to put it up on the wall in a tiny room. Perhaps, pestering our parents to buy us a certain toy when we were little is a more common experience. The desire to collect a work of art is not that far from that earnest wish we had as a child. Discovering art work, falling in love with it, spending money to buy it to have it at home, always looking at it, and touching it— how can this be not a love? And how can this be explained only by reason and logic?
As in many works of art, there is an ‘objective’ value in furniture. However, evaluating furniture involves complex criteria. For example, there are things to consider: if the furniture is original within the history of design, if it has a function and friendliness that are the foundation of furniture, if its design proportions are harmonious, if its decoration or ornamentation are of high quality and well-balanced within the furniture, if it is made with fine details, what kind of materials are used in making it, how the spirit of a craftsperson is realized in it, how well it is preserved, and first and foremost, the concept on which it was created. Nonetheless, apart from those objective value evaluations, the reason why we are attracted to a particular piece and collect it is beyond a logical explanation. After all, it is a matter of mind. It is what our hearts tell us to do. And perhaps, because of what our hearts tell us, things that cannot be articulated by our reason and perception, we are seeing fully blooming flowers in this spring of the year as well.
The exhibition Affaire de Coeur will present design furniture and designed objects from the 1950s to the 90s. Over the last few years in Korea, furniture design of well-known international designers have drawn a great deal of attention and popularity among the public; here we can see works of relatively lesser-known artists and luxury goods in this exhibition. In particular, this exhibition features works of a large number of design masters that are worth a visit. The artists include: Arne Vodder (1926-2009) who was the best pupil of Finn Juhl, Wim Rietveld (1924-1985) who was a household name in a realm of vintage furniture, Paolo Rizzatto, (1941-) who is known for his futuristic design, Paolo Palluco (1950-), Richard Sapper (1932-), Marco Zanuso (1916-2001), Willy Guhl (1915-2004), and Charles and Ray Eames (1907-1978, 1912-1988).