Nam June Paik (July 1932 – January 2006)
“Once recorded on videotape, you are no longer free to die,”
Nam June Paik, born in South Korea, was a Korean multimedia artist. He went on to live across Germany, the USA and Japan and has been branded the ‘father of video art’.
Paik worked at the intersection of art, installation, performance and technology.
“Skin has become inadequate in interfacing with reality. Technology has become the body’s new membrane of existence.”
In 1957, Paik attended the International Summer Courses for New Music in Darmstadt when he met Karlheinz Stockhausen and again in 1958 when he met John Cage, the latter of whom had a great influence on Paik. In Hommage à John Cage (1959), Paik used a combination of audiotape and performance to challenge traditional musical instrumentation and composition.
In 1962, Paik took part in the Fluxus International Festival of the New Music in Wiesbaden.
In 1974, he coined the phrase ‘electronic superhighway’, foreseeing the future of communication in the age of the internet. Paik also used more ‘traditional’ mediums for his art including paintings and drawings.
Official website: https://www.paikstudios.com/
Gagosian biography & other articles: https://gagosian.com/artists/nam-june-paik/
Biography & timeline of exhibitions (German): https://zkm.de/de/person/nam-june-paik
Smithsonian American Art Museum biography & book talk on Paik’s ‘We Are In Open Circuits’: https://americanart.si.edu/artist/nam-june-paik-3670
Timeline (German): https://www.hdg.de/lemo/biografie/nam-june-paik.html#jpto-1950
Guggenheim biography: https://www.guggenheim.org/artwork/artist/nam-june-paik
MoMA biography: https://www.moma.org/artists/4469
TATE video on Paik’s work: https://www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/tate-modern/exhibition/nam-june-paik
Visual exhibits of Paik’s works: https://americanart.si.edu/exhibitions/paik
Timeline & description of major artworks: https://www.theartstory.org/artist/paik-nam-june/
Artsy biography & visual exhibits including Zen For TV: https://www.artsy.net/artist/nam-june-paik
Works of art by hand: https://www.nga.gov/collection/artist-info.5145.html#works
Action music; video sculptures; TV Bra for Living Sculpture; TV Cello; film & video: https://walkerart.org/collections/artists/nam-june-paik
Artnet biography & visual artworks: http://www.artnet.com/artists/nam-june-paik/
A look back at some of Paik’s most famous works including Magnet TV, TV Buddha, Global Groove, TV Guide and Sistine Chapel: https://www.artnews.com/feature/nam-june-paik-television-video-art-famous-works-1202694737/
Video of Fish Flies on Sky by Kunstpalast Museum: https://www.kunstpalast.de/de/museum/sammlung/kunstwerk-des-monats/archiv-2/copy-of-jan-fi%C5%A1ar
Video of Game Byter: https://www.galerie-thomas.de/en/artists/nam-june-paik
Paik’s nephew on his uncle’s approach to life, art and music: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5RE1ueYnSVc&ab_channel=Tate
Interview about Paik’s legacy: https://www.arts.gov/stories/magazine/2012/4/arts-technology/nam-june-paik#transcript
Satellite Art: An Interview With Nam June Paik: https://www.ekac.org/paik.interview.html
Reviews & Articles:
Article on Paik at Tate Modern: https://www.cobosocial.com/dossiers/nam-june-paik-at-tate-modern/
Nam June Paik: the ‘Techno Shaman of the Fluxus Collective’ (German): https://fahrenheitmagazine.com/arte/nam-june-paik-el-tecno-chaman-del-colectivo-fluxus
Documentary on Paik: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q6c6wxWPaFY&ab_channel=YoutubeKCCLA
Current exhibition overview at SFMOMA: https://www.sfmoma.org/exhibition/nam-june-paik-2021/
The Case for Video Art: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YcXpAHVAxwY&ab_channel=TheArtAssignment