Dongkyun Vak. Heatwave

Project Room | 20 April – 2 June 2024

On the occasion of the first edition of EXPOSED Torino Photo Festival, CAMERA’s Project Room will host Heatwave, an exhibition by the young South Korean artist Dongkyun Vak (Seoul, 1992). Vak is the winner of the third edition of A New Gaze, a biennial prize created by the Swiss Art Vontobel Collection and dedicated to contemporary photography.

Featuring more than twenty photographs, including light boxes and medium and large format prints, Heatwave explores the relationship between living beings, nature, and technology in the contemporary world. The images capture natural and man-made landscapes, mechanical prototypes, motor vehicles, architecture, and the bodies that inhabit them. Rather than simply documenting environmental catastrophe, they form a visual catalog of how technological innovation and eco-friendly design can create a new way of living together.

Vak uses the seductive aesthetics of fashion photography to create an aseptic space to examine the role of technology, innovation, and knowledge at such a historical juncture. By re-enacting or reconstructing various moments, scenes, and situations, the artist compares the ingenuity of nature with that of the factory, thus reflecting on a new configuration of today’s landscape. The project is inspired by the notion of the Anthropocene, which defines the current historical period as a new geological era in which the effects of human activity outstrip those of geological and evolutionary processes on the planet. This not only raises concerns and fears, but also, as Vak points out, presents new challenges for the future. These challenges urge us to rethink current lifestyles and address pressing issues such as global warming, climate imbalance, and loss of habitat and biodiversity.


The exhibition, curated by Giangavino Pazzola, can be seen in CAMERA’s Project Room, from April 20 to June 2, 2024.