Directed by Changhee Chun
A visual poem on life, death and rebirth of water.
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Professor & Filmmaker
(Morgan Woodward Distinguished Professor in Film)
Department of Art + Art History
The University of Texas at Arlington
Since the first moment I saw the effect that a film can have on an audience, I have been intrigued by filmmaking. I was accepted to film school in Korea during a time of economic, social and political crisis, so studying the arts was not encouraged. After graduating from Hanyang University in Korea, I established myself with freelance production companies, and eventually was chosen to be a producer and director at a major broadcasting station in Korea. I produced over fifty television commercials, music videos, fiction films, documentaries and also produced the Korean broadcasting of the 1996 Atlanta Olympics. The organizational and leadership skills I acquired early in my career have strengthened my ability to communicate and effectively produce my own independent films and video arts.
From my graduate studies, I was able to focus on melding the conventions and discipline I learned from the media industry to the free, creative process required for independent film. The product of this process is evident in most of my film works. I have also received a Fulbright Senior Scholar Award to work on a documentary, as well as shown my work at many film festivals and screenings. In short, I have actively built my career through numerous different professional visual projects. Many of these professional projects were also awarded funding for development, production or completion. In addition to these creative projects, I was invited to present various films and related topics at over twenty different international and national conferences.
In the area of commercial and client-based productions, I also produced, photographed, and/or directed numerous film/video projects. As a working Director of Photography (DP) outside of my own independent projects, I have been on a journey to create films that not only tackle tough social issues, but also leave a lasting impression visually. My flexibility and ability to apply my knowledge of cinematography for different genres and filmic styles is what I attempt to display as a professional DP.
My personal production and work experience in the film industry is what gives me the unique perspective and skill base I have to offer to students in the academic world, beyond theories and textbook definitions of technique and film art. Without constantly challenging myself through independent productions, I would not gain knowledge of new technology, and I don’t think that I would be able to answer the question I ask my students at the beginning and end of each course: Why do you want to be a filmmaker?
After extensive experience in the media industry and independent productions, I’m really interest in creating visually stimulating films that directly incorporate current and prevailing issues including social justice, discrimination, diversity, and environmental issues.
As a filmmaker, I believe that no socially minded films are entirely successful without true human interaction with the issues tackled; I also believe that filmmakers cannot request viewers to become involved in some of the multiplicity of social movements in the world without first setting the example ourselves. I am always searching for ways to incorporate social responsibility into my film projects. A film allowing unique contribution to mankind as well as art itself often only comes after a film artist has tried to overcome the new challenge. I strongly believe that the privilege to create a valuable film is granted only to those who can rise to challenge. I accept this challenge with creative enthusiasm.