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Wonsook Kim, Forest Scenes

Arario Gallery
521 West 25th street, 212-206-2760
October 1 - October 21, 2009
Reception: Saturday, October 3, 3 - 5 PM
Web Site

The AHL Foundation is pleased to present the 43rd solo exhibition of Wonsook Kim to be held at Arario Gallery Project Space, NY. The exhibition will include Kim’s newest series of paintings based on Schumann’s Waldszenen (Forest Scenes), Op. 82 as well as numerous small drawings and an earlier large scale work titled Till We Have Faces based on the book by C.S. Lewis.

Wonsook Kim’s paintings almost always seem to be performing a gentle spiritual dance. In the series Forest Scenes Kim’s signature curvilinear lines and gestural brushstrokes of ink on paper capture the poetic beauty of Schumann’s music by creating a wondrous mythical forest populated with enchanting winged angels, sensuous floating lovers, profit birds, and whimsical dancing figures with swaying branches for limbs. Amidst the starry constellation and bellowing feathers fairytale-like narratives unfold in the darkness of the forest.

Utilizing the Eastern calligraphic style, the fluidity and facility of Kim’s brushwork lends spontaneity and gestural freedom to her work. The apparent naiveté of her simplified forms subvert her highly sophisticated and powerful control over her medium. Calligraphy’s directness of expression along with subtle washes of ink/color and ambiguity of lines convey immediacy and openness of the moment as Kim merges the poetic and the mythical, the human and natural worlds.

Till We Have Faces illustrates the tale of Psyche and Cupid retold from the perspective of Orual, the “ugly” older sister. Kim adopts allegorical and metaphorical representation to reveal universal notions of faith, love, forgiveness, and redemption. A sense of timelessness exists in Kim’s work along with a recognition of something familiar in our own lives. By combining her autobiographical experiences with myths she creates a unique poetic vision that is at once universal and touchingly personal.

Wonsook Kim’s work has been exhibited and collected widely. She has held solo exhibitions throughout the US, Canada, Germany, France, Bulgaria, Spain, Brazil, Italy, Japan, and Korea. Public collections include the Museum of Modern Art (NY), the Brooklyn Museum of Art, Ringling Museum of Art (Sarasota, FL), North Dakota Museum of Art, Illinois State University Museum, National Museum of Women In the Arts (Washington, D.C.), National Museum of Contemporary Art (Korea), Leeum Museum of Art (Korea), Sunjae Museum (Korea), Watari Museum of Contemporary Art (Japan), and the Vatican Collection (Italy). Kim studied at Hong-Ik University and holds a BFA and MFA from Illinois State University.

This exhibition is presented by the AHL Foundation, a 501c non-profit organization established to support cultural and artistic events with the purpose of building a wider public awareness of the contributions of Korean-American artists to contemporary art, and hosted by Arario Gallery New York.
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