Bridge 5: Artist Statement

I am an artist and designer. I grew up in Seoul, South Korea. Seoul is a very busy and huge city. So the city environment influenced me and my artwork a lot. People in Seoul are very sensitive to trends and aesthetics and as I grew up in this city, I naturally got interested in art and design especially in commercial and trendy things. I usually like to work with conventional art materials such as acrylic, charcoal, and photography. In Bridge 4 project, I created five series of portrait of my girlfriend who is in St. Louis. The portraits are painted from same photo, but painted in different days. In painting different versions of the same picture there are inevitable deviations in each piece and it is in those variations where my emotions and our relationship show.

I am also very interested in readymade and appropriation concepts. So I also like to use readymade objects, found materials, and trash. The idea of taking pre-existing objects or images and reinterpreting and deconstructing the contexts really captivated me. In Bridge 2 project, I bought several dust sweepers and pasted them on a women’s jacket and made it like a fur coat. The dust sweeper fur coat was to make a protection garment for my partner, but also it was a satire of fur industry. I do not want my works to be solidified as a single style or subject. My works are not only limited to my personal experiences or feelings, but also explore about formalistic subjects such as abstraction and deal with social issues and the environment surrounding me. Art and design are visual language to me. My goal as an artist is to communicate abstract ideas that cannot simply be conveyed through words with the viewer. When initially looking at my pieces, it is as various as to be categorized as abstract, figurative, or ready-made, but the context behind them pursues an abstract explanation and uncertainty of interpretation.

During the studio class this semester, I learned how to use Adobe Premiere Pro. It was my first time to make video art and it was also first time I made an artwork about my future. Also, I learned how to collaborate with peers. In Bridge 2 project, I had to make a garment for my partner, so I had to know very well about my partner. In Bridge 4 project, my classmates and I had to make a tableau vivant based on Van Gogh’s portrait. Since tableau vivant requires a lot of effort and time, my group and I learned how to divide the work efficiently and help each other to make the project. Before this project, I didn’t like to work with other people because I always have a strong opinion and it always frustrates me when people have different opinion with me. However, I learned that different perspectives and opinions can make something totally new and creative that I cannot think of it alone. Lastly, I learned about new artists and their working process. In the studio class, we went to field trip to Brooklyn Museum and we had opportunities to meet artists who are Elizabeth’s friends. We could actually ask questions and listen to the actual artists’ explanations about their works and process. In seminar class this semester, I learned how to write research paper which will be very helpful and useful in the future. I learned a lot from writing the research paper. I learned more deeply about the artist and his works and I learned how to interpret and make a statement about the work using academic sources. Also, I learned various forms of writing that I have not done before such as letters and interviews. Writing a letter to myself was very awkward and difficult at the first time, but it helped me thinking what I pursue in the future. Lastly, I learned that writing my thoughts and ideas are as important as making an artwork. Writing about my artwork helped me organize the ideas and develop the artwork more deeply. In studio and seminar class, I experienced with so many things I have not done before. Also, writing something related to my artwork such as interview and letter really helped me visualizing the ideas because I had to think more deeply about the project.

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