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Nam June Paik Biography


Born in the 1930s, South Korean artist Paik Nam June studied in Korea, Japan and West Germany before moving to the United States to pursue his artistic career. Known as a trailblazer and credited with creating the field of Video Art in the 1960s, he was highly competent in a variety of media and was open to working with new technology to create innovative forms of art. Video Art is said to have been born when Paik used a Sony video camera to shoot footage of Pope Paul VI in New York City in 1965 and went on to exhibit the work.

As well as a visual artist, Paik Nam June was also a classically trained musician. As audio visual technology advanced, he was able to produce videos to accompany the music he produced. He joined the Neo-Dada and Fluxus art movements, inspired by composer John Cage and his use of real life noises in his pieces. He quickly gained a reputation as the leading light in musical video production. A true pioneer, his work has continued to be regularly exhibited since his death in 2006. One of his most famous works is “One candle, Candle Projections”, depicting a hypnotic video of a burning candle. Paik died aged 73 in Miami in the United States.

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