Seoul's Gallery Hyundai presents a solo exhibition of Minjung Kim, Paper, Ink and Fire: After the Process, from 1st September to 8th October 2017. For almost thirty years, Kim has been developing a body of creative works that employ Hanji, the Korean mulberry paper, and ink, as well as fire.
Minjung Kim has been exploring the artistic movements of the East and West. Using black ink to draw lines or create spontaneous strokes, her technique involves layering Hanji paper which she delicately burns with incense sticks and candles. The use of Hanji and fire as a medium and the subtle, repetitive handwork add depth to her work with a formal richness and unsuspected poetic variations. The careful choice of materials, delicate and controlled burning, and a patient collage of thin Hanji paper — every element in the work of Minjung Kim reflects concentration and contemplation. The repetitious and reflective process is an important part of her work, which leads to meditation and healing.
The current exhibition comprises approximately thirty representative works of the artist. Works from her 2008 series Pieno di Vuoto (Full of emptiness) metaphorically reveal a cyclical relationship between filling and emptying through the layers of colorful Hanji paper burnt in holes that are gradually covered by bigger holes. Story and theThe Street series create a poetic rhythm by pasting carefully burnt Hanji pieces in layers.
Minjung Kim, Story, 2011, mixed media on mulberry Hanji paper, 150 x 150cm
courtesy of the artist and Gallery Hyundai, Seoul
A more recent series, Insight, provides a musical impression through the unique nature of Hanji and rhythmical arrangements of subtle differences in colors between the front and back side of Hanji.
In the Phasing series, lively and spontaneous brush strokes overlapped by delicately controlled burning gives an ambivalent impression.
Minjung Kim was born in 1962 in Gwangju, Republic of Korea. In her early years, she studied under respected water colorist Yeongun Kang. In Seoul's Hong Ik University, she studied oriental painting and later graduated from the Brera Academy in Milan in 1991. In Europe, she developed an interest in the abstract works of Paul Klee and Franz Kline. Kim's work has received high critical acclaim, and are included in important collections such as the Fondazione Palazzo Bricherasio in Torino and the Museum Sbygningen in Copenhagen. in 2015, she presented at the Venice Biennale and held a solo exhibition at the OCI Museum in Seoul. More recently her works have been shown at the Hermes Foundation in Singapore (2017). She currently lives and works in between France and New York.