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After engaging with individuals within the disabled community for fifteen years, I began documenting their daily lives. Through this experience, I realised that what they desired was not unilateral assistance, but to communicate with individuals outside of the disabled community. Their lives are no different from those of non-disabled people— all they need is assistance from another person. Some individuals who I interacted with who are physically challenged do not want to be photographed because they aspire to be treated like everyone else.
After exchanging several personal conversations, I learned that disabled people share the same desires for physical intimacy and affection like everyone else. As a way to empower and highlight these feelings, I started to create nude portraits of people within the disabled community. While creating these photographs, it was my ambition to highlight their facial expressions and gestures in a manner that validated and elevated their feelings and desires.
Giljung Yoon was born in South Korea in 1961. His work has been exhibited widely throughout South Korea and was the subject of several solo exhibitions at Index Gallery, Seohakdong Gallery, Gallery Sai, Ryugaheon Gallery, Seoul City Hall Design Plaza, Gallery Now, and Hyewha Station Gallery. Giljung’s work has also been exhibited internationally, which includes Art Stage Singapore, Brisas de Corea at Geleria Saro Leon in Spain, and more. His bodies of work, Stone Man and Traces of Memory, were published by IAAN books in 2016 and 2015, respectively. In 2019, he was invited as a Featured Exhibitor at Head On Photo Festival in Sydney, Australia.