DJIN SUK KIM
& ARTIST'S STATEMENT
CV / RESUME
Born Seoul, Korea 1947.
Working Artist since 1969.
1969 Bachelor of Fine Arts, Hong-ik University, Seoul, Korea.
1978 Master of Fine Arts (E.N.A.F.), Hong-ik University, Seoul, Korea.
1982 FAPS, Fine Arts, University of D’Art Decoratif, Paris, France.
SELECTED SOLO EXHIBITIONS:
2009 ArtLink Gallery, Seoul, Korea
2006 Underground Galleries, Brooklyn, New York
2004 gallery 104, Brooklyn, New York
2002 Gallery 104, Brooklyn, New York
2000 Gallery 104, Brooklyn, New York.
1985 Kwan Hoon Gallery, Seoul, Korea.
1983 Space Gallery, Seoul, Korea.
1981 Lia Granbiher Gallery, Paris, France.
SELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS:
2008 MOMA (Museum of Modern Art, Seoul), Seoul, Korea: Eonni is Back.
2008 MOMA (Seoul Museum of Modern Art: Gyeonggi GCC Art Complex), Daebudo, Korea: Wise Man in Daebudo.
2000 20-20 (Part 1), Gallery Korea. Korean Cultural Service. New York, N.Y.
2000 20-20 (Part 2), Gallery Korea. Korean Cultural Service. New York, N.Y.
1999 Patjis on Parade, Women’s Art Festival ’99.
1998 Silk Light: Asian American Arts Center, New York City.
1998 Kim Chi Extravaganza, Korean American Museum, Los Angeles, California.
1996 National Show Case Exhibition, Alternative Museum , New York, NY.
1996 Passion to Create, Galleria Botica, Boricua College, New York City.
1996 Two Person Show, Open House Gallery, New York City.
1991 Hana Kent Gallery, New York City.
1988 Second Exhibition of Feminism. Min Gallery, Seoul, Korea.
1988 Meeting of Poetry and Painting, Min Gallery, Seoul, Korea.
1987 October Gathering 1987 Exhibition, Min Gallery, Seoul, Korea.
1986 From Half to One, Min Gallery, Seoul, Korea.
1985 October Gathering, Kwan Hoon Arts Gallery, Seoul, Korea.
1983 Hong-ik Fine Arts Exhibition”, Sponsored by Hong-ik University at gallery, Seoul, Korea.
1982 Former et Vie Exhibition, Hotel Astra, Paris, France.
1980 Tripartite Exhibition, Seoul Gallery, Seoul, Korea.
Selected Collectors of Ms. Kim’s Work:
Permanent Collection: MOMA, Seoul, Korea
J.H. Park, Former Prime Minister of South Korea
S.H. Kim, Cathay Pacific Airways, Seoul, Korea
D.Y. Cho, South Korean Industrialist, Seoul, Korea
J. P. Harding, New York City
P.C. Rehnquist, New York City
Bing Gallery, Seoul, Korea
Min International Architectural Company, Seoul, Korea
Massimo Medici, Milan, Italy
Michel Sandoc, Paris, France
Havier Fox, Mexico City, Mexico
Ms. Kim was one of the original three founders, along with Suk Nam Yun and In Soon Kim, of The October Gathering, the very first modern South Korean Feminist Artist Group. The Group’s first exhibition was held in 1986 and entitled Half to One. Half represents South Korea’s population of women and One represents all of South Korea’s women coming together.
In this early, formative period the term feminist artist had a different meaning than today. Djin Suk Kim’s small, revolutionary group was fighting for the right of female artists to be equal and respected, to be equal among their contemporary male Korean artists and male fine art academics. The work of The October Gathering was absolutely essential and instrumental in breaking the male dominated stronghold of artist and art academician.
Ms. Kim was deeply influenced by and strongly drawn to the natural, simple beauty of early Korean folk paintings (Minhwa) and the swoon of the Kisaeng’s (pronounced key seng) siren song. The Kisaeng were the famous courtesan artists of old Korea (see Kisaeng history below). The Kisaeng have a connection for Ms. Kim, she believes the Kisaeng can speak through her work.
An essential component of Ms. Kim’s images is, though influenced by centuries old images and themes, her works possess highly original concepts and content. Her body of work is not simply an imitation of any earlier artist’s treatment. She is mentally transported to the time of and into the seductive world of the Kisaeng of old Korea while painting. This is an essential reason why Ms. Kim’s art possesses genuine heart and soul and totally occupies your senses and memory long after you’ve viewed the images. The images are rich, subtle and devoid of momentary novelty. Her images are as beautiful, graceful and vital in today’s world as they would have been in the time of the Kisaeng.
Artists can copy numerous historical works and interject modern values and representations of modern objects; many works are invariably done and re-done in this fashion. Ms. Kim’s vital and genuine work possesses a true inherent beauty; her very personal work shines with an ephemeral glow and possesses a timeless lasting power.
As an artist, I'm often asked what it is I try to express in my work. It's rare for me to set a theme, then proceed directly to work; rather an idea comes to me and I begin to shape and develop the idea. As a young woman I painted in a certain style; all these years later I'm more interested in describing the essence of my soul, that is to say, a portrait of my desires, fantasies and dreams.
Like all dreams, mine contain a myriad of fancies, and it is a difficult, yet tremendously enjoyable journey mapping these dreams. Sometime for me, desire manifests itself in the joining of the male and female figures, often symbolized in my works as the mountain and the valley. Fantasy too, displays itself on the carefree children who occupy my dreamscape.
I'm in one form or another a feminist artist, but my concerns are not confined to woman's issues. It saddens me that some female artists today have lost what is most intrinsic to us as women; that is, the innate ability to nurture, and the sensibility to appreciate beauty. For me, the greatest nurturer is nature itself, and that is why natural landscape is usually a preeminent feature in my work.
My choice of medium has a special meaning for me as well. I mostly draw and paint in the mixed media of conte, oil, tempera and pastel. The direct contact between the artist's hand, via the raw material on the paper, is a tactile experience that offers not only sensual pleasure but allows me to be one with the reality I'm creating. If it is signed by me it was entirely created by my hand.
We live in an age where the concept of anything goes reigns supreme; I don't believe this should mean the absence of harmony and order in works of art. Instead, given the wide array of artistic possibilities, I, as a contemporary artist, sometimes re-interpret the expressions of our old Korean masters (especially Gyumjae and also our Min Wha, or classic Korean popular painting) to compose my twenty-first century version of an Arcadia where love rules.
Ultimately, I am interested in embodying oneness in every way, for I consider this ideal to be the true expression of love. I paint and draw to celebrate love, life and oneness.