A Rock That Was Taught It Was a Bird

A Rock That Was Taught It Was a Bird


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Kim Beom 김범

(Korean, b. 1963)

Stone, wood, wooden table, single channel video on 12-inch flat monitor (1 hr, 27 min, 30 sec; edition 1/3)

Table: 73 x 109 x 81 cm (28 3/4 x 42 15/16 x 31 7/8 in.)

Louis D. Kacalieff, M.D. Fund 2010.263


Fun Fact

This sculptural assemblage is a commentary on authoritarian regimes.


The man in the video repeats “You are a bird!” to a rock, while a sculptural assemblage to the left features a rock posed like a bird on a bough. A Rock That Was Taught It Was a Bird is one of Kim’s poetic, poignant works on authoritarian regimes—South Korea, for example, during the 1970s and ’80s—where education was frequently used as a tool to influence people’s view about the world and themselves.

Beom Kim is a Seoul-based artist whose mixed-media works are internationally well known. His art explores the intersection of various artistic genres and media including poetry, drawing, video, painting, and installation. Kim often uses ready-made objects—in this work, a wooden table, a stone, and a tree bough—and turns them into a sculptural assemblage.

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