BTS introduces CONNECT, BTS

CONNECT, BTS will display art around the world

K-Pop superstars BTS have introduced CONNECT, BTS, a series of major art projects to go on show over the coming months in five cities on four continents, open free to the public. CONNECT, BTS crosses geographical borders in a series of projects by different curators who resonated with BTS’ philosophy. It will be extensively documented online to reach a wide audience and officially launches on January 14th.

In London, the Serpentine Galleries will present Catharsis, a new work by Jakob Kudsk Steensen, immersing audiences in a digital simulation of a re-imagined old-growth forest. Set up as a single continuous shot that moves from the watery underground roots to the viewpoint of the canopy, sunlight, wind, moving leaves and water all follow individual timelines and speeds, resulting in a simulated landscape where time takes new forms. This audio-visual work can be experienced at the Serpentine and anywhere around the world via a dedicated website The display will run January 14-March 15th.

From January 15-February 2nd, Gropius Bau in Berlin will present Rituals of Care, a series of performance works by over 17 international artists including Jelili Atiku, boychild, Cevdet Erek, Marcelo Evelin, Maria Hassabi, Mette Ingvartsen, Baba Murah and Candomblé Berlin, Antonija Livingstone and Bill Fontana, among others. Curated by Stephanie Rosenthal and Noémie Solomon, the performance program spans through experimental choreography, healing practices, sonic environments, moving landscapes, and collective gatherings. Together, these interdisciplinary works and practices explore the necessary conditions for coming together and tending to environments, to physical and spiritual worlds and to other beings.

The Argentinian artist Tomás Saraceno will present Fly with Aerocene Pacha from January 21-March 22nd. For the first time in history, a human being will float into the sky powered only by the sun and the air we breathe, without fossil fuels, solar panels, batteries or helium. A synthesis of art, science and environmental activism, Aerocene Pacha will launch in Salinas Grandes, Argentina’s great salt lake. This work also stands in solidarity with the indigenous communities there, whose land has been despoiled by lithium mining. This ambitious project will set several world records for fully solar, human free flight. Fly with Aerocene Pacha on Instagram and online. The resulting film will be shown in Buenos Aires until March 22nd.

Zaha Hadid’s Dongdaemun Design Plaza (DDP), Seoul’s newest and most iconic landmark, will be the location for two major public exhibitions from January 28-March 20th. British-born artist Ann Veronica Janssens will create Green, Yellow, Pink, a mysterious disorienting sensory environment filled with a haze of colored artificial mist, giving sculptural form to light. Korean artist Yiyun Kang will present Beyond the Scene, a digital environment on a large-scale, a reimagining of BTS’ signature dance movements as seen through the techniques of projection mapping.

New York’s Brooklyn Bridge Park Pier 3 will be the site of the creation of a vast ‘drawing in space’ by internationally acclaimed British artist Antony Gormley from February 4-March 27th. New York Clearing (2020) is a single line made up of 18 kilometres of square aluminium tubing that loops and coils without beginning or end, turning itself into an environment for the viewer that counters the grid of modernism and the city with swooping lines of energy.

CONNECT, BTS has been developed by a group of international curators under the artistic direction of independent Korean curator, Daehyung Lee. Stephanie Rosenthal, Director, Gropius Bau (Berlin); Noémie Solomon, Independent Curator, Gropius Bau (Berlin); Ben Vickers, Chief Technology Officer, Serpentine Galleries (London); Kay Watson, Digital Curator, Serpentine Galleries (London); and Thomas Arnold, Principal, Alta Art Production (New York) are featured.

“It is a great honor to participate in CONNECT, BTS with such renowned artists and curators from all over the world,” states BTS. The band further added, “We speak different languages and come from multiple cultural backgrounds and have lived through unique life experiences. Contemporary art and music are also two different worlds. This project is especially meaningful to us because it truly represents diversity and creates a collective, positive message for the world that we value. Through this project, we hope to return the great amount of love and support from our fans, ARMY, and all audiences.”

“The projects and contemporary artists assembled for CONNECT, BTS offer diverse responses to the world around us,” comments Art Director Daehyung Lee. “With such powerful message and direction they have taken, BTS has become a global group worth noting among global contemporary artists. BTS’ philosophy in the form of support for diversity, and love and care for the periphery is an important motif of the project. The significance of art, whether it consists of sound, sculpture, photography or another medium, is its innate potential to forge a relationship between artist, viewer, the immediate environment, and the atmosphere which encircles and extends far beyond. This project will encourage appreciation of diversities and establish ground for great new synergies to be born.”

Audiences visiting the exhibitions will be able to access special artwork introduction videos recorded by BTS. These clips can be accessed via the CONNECT, BTS official website by clicking on “Secret Docent.”

CONNECT, BTS is in support of the group’s upcoming Map of the Soul: 7 album, available February 21st via Big Hit Entertainment. The first single drops January 17th. Last week, BTS released Interlude : Shadow, the comeback trailer for their fourth studio album.

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Buddy Iahn
Buddy Iahn founded The Music Universe when he decided to juxtapose his love of web design and music. As a lifelong drummer, he decided to take a hiatus from playing music to report it. The website began as a fun project in 2013 to one of the top independent news sites.
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