Jun Ahn: A New Perspective at Alarming Heights

Posted by Kristi Choi & filed under Art & Design, Life.

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Photo courtesy of ahnjun.com

Feeling a little uneasy just by looking at these photos? Meet Jun Ahn, a South Korean photographer who is seen dangling at the frightening edge of skyscraping structures in her project titled, Self Portrait. Selected as one of twenty photographers to watch in 2013 by the British Journal of Photography, Ahn’s striking photos have captured the attention of many people around the world. What’s even more captivating however, is the rather positive narrative about her personal journey, which she shares implicitly through her project.

In her interview with the British Journal of Photography, Ahn explains how her idea for Self Portrait first came together. She recalls on a time when she was sitting at the edge of her apartment in New York overcome with a grim feeling that her youthful days were coming to an end, and an uncertainty for her future path. She then peered down by her feet to see an empty space, a “void” she says, hitting her with a realization that what she was actually standing on everyday was exactly that—an empty space ready to be filled. She suddenly saw this space as representing ‘the present’ time for her, transforming her perspective on life and death, the present and future, and ultimately igniting the beginning of her project.

Photo courtesy of bjp-online.com

At first glance of these images, I unconsciously fell straightforward into the realm that Ahn hopes to steer her audience away from, the dark-side. After reading about her concept behind the project however, I was captivated by how such alarming photos could symbolize raw emotions and fragile elements of life that everyone confronts at some point in time. Jun Ahn was able to take these emotions and elements and translate them into an innovative visual narrative through a series of photos. Frightening yet brilliant, isn’t it? Through her work she reminds us how self- healing different forms of art can be, open to your own personal interpretation.

I would agree with the British Journal of Photography and say that Jun Ahn is definitely one to watch in 2013. I expect to see more from her as she continues to gain exposure and recognition through her lined up art shows around the world.


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