As with most superstitions, it’s hard to say where the old warning about mirrors actually came from, and whether there’s some context we’re missing. These beliefs may have evolved from way back in the time when humans saw their reflections in puddles and worried that their souls might be trapped in the image. Ancient myths often give reflections magical powers. Whether you consider yourself a superstitious person or not, perhaps you don’t want to take a chance when you’re handling a mirror and concerned that it might break.
But if shattering a single mirror brings seven years of bad luck, this artist is in for a rough decade or so. Definitely not made to fit in a frame, these wall-mounted works of art are each one-of-a-kind creations best viewed when back-lit to show the mosaic of imperfections within their rectangular form. Each crack becomes like the line in a drawing, but light itself becomes the medium, shining through the glass.
Anyone who has seen the broken screen of a cell phone or cracks in a window knows there is a kind of art within the chaos and destruction. By selectively chipping and cracking away at a solid piece of mirrored glass, Hye-Yeon Kim creates unique objects of artisan decor.
The results are something between controlled craft and abstract artwork – there is no way to completely control the cracks the propagate through the surface, but they can be guided to creates shapes recognizable as fish, flowers, leaves and other natural objects.
Perhaps, in this case, since the breakage is intentional, no ill effects will be experienced by the artist. But looking at the sheer beauty of these pieces, one might think of a quote from a poem written by the late great Leonard Cohen: “There is a crack in everything. That’s how the light gets in.”