Two years ago, Do Ho Suh's Karma (2003) walked all over the competition in Red Hot: Asian Art Now from the Chaney Family Collection at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. Whatever misgivings people had about the show, they couldn't fault Suh's inclusion.
Suh strikes again in Your Bright Future: 12 Contemporary Artists from Korea, which opens Saturday at the MFAH.
If you've got a mind to blow, Fallen Star 1/5 will do the job. It depicts the aftermath of a collision between two buildings, each a one-fifth-scale model of actual structures.
The smaller building is the traditional Korean house in which Suh grew up. As if lifted by a tornado, it has crashed into an 18th-century Providence, R.I. brick mansion that has been converted to an apartment building -- a common practice in New England. Suh lived in one of the units -- the one the Korean house has crashed into -- while a student at the Rhode Island School of Design. Suh has split the building in half diagonally so we can look at the evidence of the lives inside -- and the debris. He and a team of assistants -- as many as 60 during crunch time -- had to recreate each object inside, because you can't just go out and buy things that are one-fifth the normal size.
Here's footage peering into all the nooks and crannies while Suh and MFAH staff work on lighting the piece.