The Windows

Being a conceptualism photographer and land artist, John Pfahl said in his  in 1982, “all photos start with the window and end in the window. Like a life, there is no image of excluding the window and the thinking with no window doesn't exist. Window is just a mirror and the mirror is just the window. My Picture Windows is my mirror with the window. It is a perception & illusion through the window and my everlasting sense of life. As the mirror of a mind that must be cared for a lifetime, it is the frame of my life.”

John Pfahl photographed “Picture Windows” using a big camera with 16 X 20 inch. He transmitted the world through the big and meaningful window, and the world admired his photo produced for a long time. His photos carried three meanings. One is 'a distanced view' as a gap of the life, another is 'a passionate observer' between visions, and the other is 'the depth of perspective chamber' as a boundary of the life. In Picture Windows Series of John Pfahl, these three factors that is the meaning of 'window' in the life are contained. Window is the reality and the frame of vision at the same time. It is also lucida and obscura.  

"The Windows"  of Baek Seungwoo show the gap between the perception and re-perception for his own life. In today's photos, there are many windows. Through many windows, the photo is made. However, unlike these windows, there is the windows which have special meaning over the general one. His window is the window of hotel. Hotel window is the frame of visible aesthetic over the physical view to him. In addition, the hotel window is the window of perception over the visible outlook and universal view. Window is the mirror and is the window to him. Also, the window is the foreground and the background of the life. He is a hotelier. He is the member of hotel management. For him, the hotel window is the window of apperception projected by the life's structure and the frame of meaning.  

A Hotel is the place where windows exist in the world. Telling many meanings of the life from that window is the hotel. The point of deeply analyzing the meaning of the life is the hotel's window. The Windows of Baek Seungwoo meets the window of John Pfahl from that point. “The Windows” of John Pfahl  is the space of reality and vision. He looks with his own window. That is, he looks in his window, through his window, by his window, and from his window. Window is the frame of perception and re-perception of looking the self and others. 

Hotel has the good view point. People are excited at looking at nice view. So, they want to have a room with the excellent view at good hotels. Baek Seungwoo is the man of looking at such people and preparing these things. The window of the hotel is scenery of desire and scenery of modernism at the same time. Hotel's window is the vision of reality and the substance of vision. Hotel's window is deeply dark. Windows of all hotels must have the deep darkness. Deeper the darkness is, deeper the vision is. When the darkness is deep and the vision is deep, the mirror of the self is clear. 

Today's hotel becomes imagery like Platon's cave. Realization is binominal of reality and welcome. Hotel's window is the boundary of such the binominal and the gap of binominal. Accordingly, there is no wonder that the man who mortgages oneself to the window realizes the window. The windows, teaching who he is, his face. This is why he photographs the window and why these photos exist.  

Jin, Dong Sun
Director of The Contemporary Photographic Institute