S.K. art curator accused of plagiarism

Posted on : 2006-10-18 15:34 KST Modified on : 2006-10-18 15:34 KST
Intrduction of exhibition guide 40-50% his work, says Dutch critic
 who says these were lifted from his work.
who says these were lifted from his work.

A South Korean curator has been accused of plagiarism after his introduction to the official exhibition guide of the Shanghai Biennale was said to be largely the work of a Dutch art critic.

The guide’s introduction, also carried on the Shanghai Biennale’s web site, was accused by art critic Henk Slager of being his own work, which he had prepared for a seminar held in Busan in April 2005. Slager protested to the Shanghai Biennale’s organization committee, which deleted the introduction from its Internet site and is preparing to republish the exhibition guide.

The Shanghai Biennale, which opened on September 5, will continue until November 5.

On October 17, Rhee Wonil, 46, a joint curator of the exhibition, wrote the English-language introduction of the exhibition guide, which was also posted on the Internet site of the event under the title, "Text by Curator."

According to the Dutch critic, Lee pirated his writing for about 40-50 percent of the introduction in Lee’s chapters titled, "Hyper-activity in Contemporary Art and in Shanghai Biennale" and "Total Re-design." Slager also e-mailed a Korean art magazine, saying, "Lee used my writing for the core concept of the introduction’s latter part. He only changed a few words or sentences."

In response, Lee said, "I had someone translate my writing into English, and the translator omitted the footnotes by mistake. I didn’t know that they had deleted my introduction from the [Shanghai Biennale] Internet site. I apologized to Slager via e-mail, and a seminar booklet at the Shanghai Biennale symposium will carry his original essay. I and the organization committee have agreed to republish the exhibition guide with the footnotes intact," added Lee.

However, the art magazine that received an e-mail from Henk Slager said, "Slager was disappointed at Lee’s explanation, and he continues to urge us to uncover the truth behind the alleged plagiarism."

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