Josh Cho

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What Is My Work About? 

Without having romantic reservations of being a Los Angeles native artist, much of my work is distilled from the city’s cultural landscape and history.I am interested in the capacity of photography to re-imagine histories, subvert the sublime, and dissolve space and time. What is arresting to me about a photograph is its ability to depict surfaces and alter them simultaneously. These particular characteristics contained in the process of making photographic images are revealed, concealed and exploited in my work in order to address issues of temporality, site, landscape, veracity and the medium of photography itself.

 

Artist Statement

Green

Golf courses photographed at night further abstracts and heightens the alteration of the landscape. Intrigued in both the abstractive abilities of a photograph and the subject of landscapes–specifically about the built environment–golf courses serves as an appropriate subject to think about the ways in which landscapes are altered for consumption and transformed into something otherworldly by creating more order in them than it normally contains.

 

Unfaithful

In this series, images are collected from the internet depicting geyser-like bursts of water produced by broken fire hydrants in the urban landscape. The images are then converted to black and white, vertically recomposed, and digitally edited to discard any humans from the original photograph.

Resembling the western survey photographs of the Old Faithful geyser by William Henry Jackson and the romanticized iteration by Ansel Adams, the reference used is not merely to revisit that history, but rather to use it as a point of departure—quite literally, from a position of modernist photographers traveling into the future (present) discovering and pointing their cameras to a man-made accidental phenomenon instead of the pristine natural world—in order to overlap space and time.

 

Los Angeles River

An ongoing project I am working on about the Los Angeles River that started in 2013 is parsed into two photographic series. One series consists of photographs of the Los Angeles River in its imagined natural state prior to the channelization of the river by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in 1936. To find and document natural segments of the river without obstructing views of the city, sites are being navigated by kayak. With unique vantage points and from selective framing, images depict the river in such a way to remove any reference of the subject existing in an urban environment.

The second series of images represent the surface of the water in motion throughout various times of the day. The images are created from an elevated viewpoint looking down on the river in order to dislocate and abstract the subject.

The project serves to locate the historical residue of the river by re-discovering, re-imagining, and re-picturing the site.

 

Kodak

Another ongoing project that started in 2012, a variety of photographic strategies are used to create images of Kodachrome Basin State Park in Utah. Named after a now defunct and infamous color slide film, the landscape now remains as a kind of residue to the demise of the analog film industry. Interested in these peculiar and unique relationships between landscape and the photographic industry, images are produced with the intent to reveal these uncanny connections.

One strategy used for the project was to bury photographs in the landscape creating an abstract grid of images. Using black and white silver gelatin paper produced by Kodak, the photographs were left over the course of a day and pulled out at night to be processed. Due to the absorbent nature of the paper, the abstract images of dirt and light are combined with its physical indentations.

 

CV

EDUCATION

2011

University of California, Irvine, MFA

2008

California Polytechnic University San Luis Obispo, BFA

 

SOLO EXHIBITIONS

2013

“Unfaithful”, Commonwealth and Council, Los Angeles, CA

2011

“Portraits”, UCI Contemporary Arts Center, Irvine, CA

 

GROUP EXHIBITIONS

2014

“Mas Attack”, Santa Monica Art Studios, Santa Monica, CA

“Written in the Stars”, Antelope Valley College Art Gallery, Lancaster, CA

“Public Offerings”, Autonomie Gallery, Los Angeles, CA

“Incognito”, Santa Monica Museum of Art, Santa Monica, CA

“Architecture Digested”, El Camino College Art Gallery, Torrance, CA

 

2012

“Saudade”, Ann 330 Gallery, Los Angeles, CA

 

2011

“Nothing Comes From Nothing”, La Cienegas Projects, Los Angeles, CA

“UCLA Southern California Invitational”, Wight Gallery, Los Angeles, CA

“The De-socialized Landscape”, FAR, Long Beach, CA

 

2010

“Greater LA Master of Fine Arts Exhibition”, CSULB, Long Beach, CA

“Ground Control”, UCI Room Gallery, Irvine, CA

 

2009

“The Longest Day of Summer”, One Lucky Day, S1F Gallery, Los Angeles, CA

“Welcome to the Neighborhood”, Tight Space, Santa Ana, CA

 

2008

“Photo Fair Kiev International Exhibition”, Kiev, Ukraine

 

2007

“Selected Undergraduate Exhibition”, Cal Poly University Art Gallery, San Luis Obispo, CA

 

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Bruck, Julia. “Josh Cho,” Halt Gallery Blog, August 1, 2013.

Tuck, Geoff. “Along La Brea Avenue, 5 photographers, 4 introductions”, Notes on Looking , Los Angeles, CA, February 29, 2012.

Carson, Juli. “What Remains”, Nothing Comes From Nothing (exhibition catalog), Los Angeles, CA, 2011.

Cruz, Lenika. “Curated by UCLA graduate students, ‘Circulate, Exchange: Nugget & Gravy’ features works inspired by the marketplace”, The Daily Bruin, Los Angeles, CA, September 22, 2011.

Greenfield, Mathiew and Wang, Christine. UCLA Southern California Invitational (exhibition catalog), Los Angeles, CA, 2011.

Tuck, Geoff. “UCI at LCP”, Notes on Looking , Los Angeles, CA, August 19, 2011.

 

Awards & Fellowships

2011

Exhibition Grant, University of California, Irvine

Graduate Student Research Award (Winter), University of California, Irvine

Graduate Student Research Award (Spring), University of California, Irvine

 

2010

Graduate Merit Fellowship, University of California, Irvine

Graduate Student Research Award (Fall), University of California, Irvine

Department of Studio Art Production Grant, University of California, Irvine

 

2009

Graduate Merit Fellowship, University of California, Irvine

Graduate Student Research Travel Grant, University of California, Irvine

 

2008

Graduate Merit Fellowship, University of California, Irvine

Department of Studio Art Production Grant, University of California, Irvine

Creative Quarterly Magazine Contest Award

Cal Poly Arts Award, California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo CA

 

2007

San Luis Obispo Art Center Award, Visions Exhibition

 

Artist Talks

2014

University of Southern California

Orange Coast College

 

2013

El Camino College

 

2012

Scripps College

 

2011

California State University, Long Beach

 

2009

Orange Coast College

University of California, Irvine

 

Teaching Experiences

2014 – Present

New York Film Academy, Los Angeles, CA

Instructor in Photography

 

2013 – Present

UCLA Extension, Los Angeles, CA

Instructor in Photography

 

2011 – Present

Julia Dean Workshops, Los Angeles, CA

Instructor in Digital Imaging

 

Art Institute of California, North Hollywood, CA

Instructor in Photography

 

2011 – 2013

Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising, Los Angeles, CA

Instructor in Digital Imaging

 

2010 – 2011

University of California, Irvine, CA

Instructor in Photography