Floating Echo

at Busan Sea Art Festival (Busan, Korea, 2011)

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Floating Echo

Transparent Inflatable Buddha floating on the ocean at Songdo Beach

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“"Floating Echo" is a transparent inflatable statue of Buddha sitting on lotus on the water. The clear giant plastic sculpture floats like an invisible being. Through the statue one can see the nature,landscape and architecture around the seashore of Songdo Beach in Busan. Its subtle presence embraces and reflects the surroundings, both natural and man-made. It is seeming present and absent at the same time.

Buddhism is an important part of the Korean landscape and culture. Beomeosa (범어사) in Busan is one of the most important Buddhist temples in Korea. Despite all of the societal changes brought about by modernity and the endless acceleration of technological change, spiritualism is still deeply integrated into contemporary Korean life. In this work the form of the Buddha is rendered in clear plastic, a ubiquitous everyday material, and could be read simply as a kitsch object, yet Buddha is an eternal entity and a transcendental figure. This translucent statue echoes mysteriously on the ocean which represents intangibility, infinity and bodilessnes. What one sees is one’s own environment rather than the Buddha itself. Its elusive beingness provokes fundamental questions of existence. "Floating Echo" coexists and contradicts with nature, material and the Self.