MIK NIM & TOMIC LEE
25.11 - 04.12.2023
Giant billboards featuring Nike shoes that look like advertisements, Balenciaga hats, and clothes with logos from brands like Supreme and Adidas are dis- played. Massive boxes, cement, panels, and beams that resemble a warehouse create the impression of a fashion showroom preparing for a grand opening. However, upon closer inspection of the clothes on display, something seems off. The signature three stripes of an Adidas jacket, meticulously placed, have been reduced to two, and the lengths of the sleeves are asymmetrical. Brand tags are also doubled. Examining a Tommy Hilfiger hat and a Burberry jacket reveals subtly different textures in the two attached fabrics. In this peculiar space that feels like a fashion show or a new showroom opening, the exhibition Superposition, a collaboration between MIK NIM and Tomic Lee, challenges viewers with a new perspective at the intersection of reality and digital, and genuine and fake.
Tomic Lee, working as a Creative in an advertising company, created this project as part of his personal series “Not for Use”. Mixing replicas and originals in half, he produces hybrid items. This act can be seen as a form of rebellion or resistance in an industry that demands “make sesne” in everything, for example, reference collection, client persuasion, and better selling.
The Tomic Lee’s works remind MIK NIM of her project in 2021, Schrödinger’s Gallery. The work reinterprets Erwin Schrödinger’s famous physics thought experiment involving a cat as a virtual gallery. Unable to visit physical galleries during the COVID-era, she observed the proliferation of digital exhibitions and began questioning the importance of experiencing art in person. The Schrödinger’s Gallery, existing only as images on Instagram, reflects the paradox-ical state of being an image-only gallery that does have a physical existence. MIK NIM builds a min iature gallery of approximately 1.5x1.2x1.0m, placing her artwork photos on the walls or integrating them with surrounding objects. These photos become her artworks, uploaded to Schrödinger’s Gallery Instagram account. Viewers scrolling through the images might question whether the g llery is real or not, due to the strange ambiguity.
The attentiongrabbing element in this exhibition is a giant green panel. Green, paradoxically representing nature and strongly associated with the digital realm, turns the background into a green screen when viewers take pictures. This allows the photographed items or images to be easily replaced or disappear.
The most peculiar artwork in the exhibition is a Brita water purifier with transparent water that appears to be purified as green. The statement “Belief has nothing to do with logic” is written nearby. MIK NIM recently spent one month in the city of Lübeck, meeting people and discussing their experi- ences. The questions raised during those conversa tions, the ongoing events, and the artist’s reflection on faith and logic are expressed through this work.
MIK NIM by curating this exhibition within Schrödinger’s Gallery, as if questioning whether it is art, an object, fake, real, tangible, or virtual. It prompts viewers to consider whether we can trust what we think and see.
Similar to a cat being simultaneously in a state of life and death inside a box, the two artists in this space present numerous overlaps and contradictions, discussing things with unclear names and addresses but still existing.
Note: The Schrödinger’s hypothesis is as follows: By placing a cat in a box with an unstable atomic nucleus, which may emit radiation and release toxic gas, it is impossible to predict when or if such an event will occur without opening the box. According to Schrödinger, the cat enters a state of superposition where it’s unclear whether it’s alive or dead, leading to a paradox.