Suh was born in Seoul, South Korea in 1962. After earning his Bachelor of Fine Arts and Master of Fine Arts in Oriental Painting from Seoul National University, and fulfilling his term of mandatory service in the South Korean military, Suh relocated to the United States to continue his studies at the Rhode Island School of Design and Yale University. Suh leads an itinerant life, hopping from his family home in Seoul (where his father is a major influence in Korean traditional painting) to his working life in New York. Migration, both spatial and psychological, has been one of Suh's themes, manifested through biographical narrative and emotionally inflected architecture. Best known for his intricate sculptures that defy conventional notions of scale and site-specificity, Suh's work draws attention to the ways viewers occupy and inhabit public space. Interested in the malleability of space in both its physical and metaphorical manifestations, Suh constructs site-specific installations that question the boundaries of identity. His work explores the relation between individuality, collectivity, and anonymity.
Suh currently lives and works in New York City and Seoul, Korea.
This is again playing with the small cast people holding up a larger character. I think the informative title turns it into something that is a burden and a punishment. The little people are almost like the big shoe’s shadow, and they have to keep up wit it.
This again, is showing how Do-Ho Suh enjoys working with the individual and the whole. All of these little casted people can hold up people walking on them. These two inch high figures all have their hands raised above their heads and they are all looking up at who they are supporting.
Stainless steel military dog tags, nickel plated copper sheets, steel structure, glass fiber reinforced resin, and rubber sheets.
Paratrooper I, 2003
For "Paratrooper-I", more than 3,000 different signatures - names of friends, acquaintances and strangers collected from personal journals and exhibition guest books - have been hand-stitched onto a thin, suspended layer of linen. The long, pink loose threads extending from each name are bound together and held by a small, shiny steel paratrooper standing atop a concrete base. The figure tugs at the threads as if collecting a deflated or caught parachute.
Who Am We?, 1996
These portraits are teenagers, about 40,000 of them. They were taken from the artist’s high-school yearbooks. You cannot tell these are photos or even recognize them individually until you are quite close to the wallpaper. When you get close, this pattern of dots become more recognizable as human faces. This is again playing with the idea of the individual being a part of the whole.
See also: Karma by Do Ho Suh