Lumpens: Pursue the Fantasy of Visual and Auditory Senses
Although what he does may not be what I am (and probably would be) doing, I admire Lumpens—a group of directors and producers in the field of video production, mostly specialized in the production of music videos (MVs), TV advertisements, experimental films, and visual art, based in South Korea. They were created by Choi Yong-Seok in 2009 and consist of 4 people, but Lumpens usually refers to Choi Yong-Seok specifically.
I came to know them as they directed a lot of BTS music videos, which I enjoy immensely.
Firstly, they like to insert stories and/or references into their MVs; especially with the stories, it gave his MVs a cinematic feeling. One of my favorite MVs is BTS’s “Spring Day”.
I love the quiet aesthetics (the use of colors and how they match with the song lyrics), and also the implied (and obvious) references (Snowpiercer—a movie about inequality, The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas—a philosophical fiction about injustice, and the Sewol ferry disaster—the sinking of a ferry which sparked social and political reactions in South Korea).
Some of the shots from the MV:
It gives depth to what people perceive as “just a music video” due to the hidden meanings and messages, on top of being aesthetically pleasing.
Other favorite shots from various of his MVs:
Secondly, I admire Choi Yong-Seok’s way of thinking. He graduated from a Visual Communication major, but he always wanted to express himself outside of the “screen”. He started making videos and exhibitions as personal activities. It’s almost as if he didn’t intend to be a director, but he just did his own thing to have fun and learn, and somehow, that’s how he became one. It reminds me that sometimes, things are that simple. You just have to work on what you like and be confident in yourself, and not worry too much, too far into the future.