Throughout December 2017, Flushing Town Hall in Queens, New York, is proudly presenting a group exhibition of six Korean-American artists who live and work in the Borough Of Queens. The artists have worked in collaboration with artists from other regions to realize their artworks.

'Queens: Envisioning Habitats’ was curated by Stephanie S. Lee, an artist who is also Flushing Town Hall’s official “teaching artist.” The exhibition centers on Queens as both a location and an environment and the artwork represents how the areas influence the creativity of artists.

The six artists from Queens will work in pairs with artists from an “outer region” to create art based on the line, dimension, space, tradition, nature, and color. All the pieces aim to make viewers consider how the local culture ripples out and impacts the creation of artwork in outer regions.

Queens, artwork, and curation

Artist and curator Stephanie S. Lee collaborated with artist Hae Jin Jeong for this exhibition, using the theme of “Tradition" alongside the encompassing theme of Queens. Each artist is proudly presenting three pieces of artwork inspired by 18th-century Korean traditional paintings.

“Both Hae Jin and I have deep admiration and appreciation of traditional Korean art,” Stephanie stated. “As a result, our works are rooted in traditional Korean paintings regarding medium and inspiration. Here’s a funny thing about Hae Jin and me, we both are artists who have the same inspirational sources, but we were also born on same date and year! How’s that for a coincidence?”

Artist Jayoung Yoon is using human hair, which is staples of her work, to create two-dimensional compositions of grids and geometric shapes with repeated hair-lines.

Her “Empty Void Series” draws inspiration from the symbolism of a circle.

“Circles are an image that represents wholeness and unity,” Jayoung explained. “The paintings evoke the deeper connectedness of all things, in spirit and body, inner and outer, consciousness and the unconsciousness."

Colors, circles, and inspiration

Sei Ryun Chun is also strongly inspired by circles and nature since, in nature, there are generally no perfectly straight lines.

“In my mind circles also represent the meditative spirit of mind and body,” she said. “I find ways to convert the beauty of nature and subsequently create space reflecting this optimistic spirit. I like to experiment through different mediums and use various materials such as handmade paper, beads, crystals, leather, green tea dye, acrylic, and ink.”

Sueim Koo is playing with the themes of “Color” in her pieces.

“I never recognized the concept of time at all because I ran too fast,” Sueim said. “One day, without my knowledge, I suddenly began to see time through a moment of love and gratitude. Time became visible in every corner of the world, and it was an amazing awakening.

So, I wanted to convert this beautiful awakening to an abstract visual image. This awakened world in my work has turned into ecstatic, exquisite and emotive qualities of colors. I hope these depicted colors also provoke previously untapped thoughts and feelings inside the viewer's mind as it did to me.”

Dong Kyu Kim is presenting two pieces of art that are made out of receipts from stores.

“You typically don’t pay attention to everyday receipts that much unless you need something to be returned or for tax-related reasons,” he stated. “But for me, the receipt is something that can prove myself living and existing here in the United States.”

After collecting receipts for nearly ten years, Dong Kyu Kim was inspired to start hand-stitching them into his artwork - a process that is inspired by traditional Korean patchwork (made from recycled materials and/or scraps) known as “Jogakbo” which results in intricate and interesting collages.

“Queens: Envisioning Habitats” will be displayed at the Flushing Town Hall in Queens, New York, throughout December. It is free to the public.

Flushing Town Hall is located at 137-35 Northern Boulevard in Flushing, New York, 11354. To learn more, visit the official website by googling “Flushing Town Hall” or call 1-718-463-7700.

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