Photos from Inside Seoul's Plastic Surgery Clinics


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Photos from Inside Seoul's Plastic Surgery Clinics

Ji Yeo's It Will Hurt a Little is an exhibition of photographs documenting South Korea's cosmetic surgery craze.

Employees only zone curtain

. All photos by Ji Yeo

Tonight at the Camera Club of New York's new Baxter Street location, photographer Ji Yeo will unveil a new body of work titled It Will Hurt A Little that goes inside Seoul's plastic surgery clinics. For the past decade, Yeo has been engaged in an intensive study of South Korea's booming cosmetic surgery industry. "Like many Koreans, my interest in cosmetic surgery began at a young age, with a desire to have procedures done on myself," Yeo writes in her artist statement. "Since then, cosmetic surgery has come to be treated more as a necessary routine than as a carefully considered option."


The exhibit's photos depict empty spaces, with no patients or doctors in the frame, and a single portrait of a plastic surgery consultant. Previously, Yeo has made dramatic portraits made in the recovery rooms of plastic surgery centers and staged performances where she invites the public to draw on her body with permanent marker, suggesting which procedures she should have done.

Below is a preview of tonight's show, and look forward to more of Yeo's new work in a forthcoming MATTE magazine dedicated entirely to her pictures.

Gyalumhan Plastic Surgery consultation manager

Gyalumhan Plastic Surgery waiting room

Wonjin Aesthetic Surgery Clinic waiting room

Gyalumhan Plastic Surgery reception area

Herche Plastic Surgery waiting area

Regen Medical Group VIP lounge

Herche Plastic Surgery consultation room

Hyundaimihak Plastic Surgery consultation rooms

Wonjin Aesthetic Surgery Clinic, President doctor's office

Mega Plastic Surgery operating theater

Herche Plastic Surgery operating theater

Mega Plastic Surgery infrared light therapy

Gyalumhan Plastic Surgery operating theater

Operating theater details

Medical waste

Medical waste

Liposuction fat bottles in an employee only zone

Regen Medical Group air showers

Supply trays in an employee0only zone

It Will Hurt a Little opens tonight, April 30, at the Camera Club of New York with a reception from 6 to 8 PM. It will remain on view until May 15.

Ji Yeo has studied photography at the Rhode Island School of Design, the International Center of Photography, and Seoul National University. See more of Ji's work on her website.

Read more VICE articles on the Camera Club of New York here.