Eastern themes meet Western techniques in the unique works of three female Korean-American artists.
God’s work as Creator is imprinted on human beings. Expression is greatly varied from one culture to another and from individual to individual. The three creators featured in this exhibit reflect on their own journeys within a specific Korean-American culture. Yet they testify to the needs, emotions, and longings common to all people. Each artist has depicted the blessing and healing that comes through a personal relationship with the Savior.
This exhibition is installed in honor of the 7th Korean World Mission Conference, which meets every four years and draws thousands of Koreans from around the world to the Wheaton College campus. The BGC Museum installation of this exhibit marks two of the largest single works to ever be installed in its gallery. Esther Kim’s King of Kings is over 13 ft. high and wide and is pieced together from 80 individual canvases. Sun Choi’s never-to-be-repeated installation, Journey of Love, spans the entirety of a 33-ft. wall, utilizes of 5,000 pins and overflows onto adjacent walls, baseboards, and ceilings (see the installation process in the slideshow below).
We hope that these pieces will illuminate your own encounter with Jesus and encourage you to walk with the Creator.
Walking with the Creator
MEET THE ARTISTS
Sun Choi immigrated to the United States in 1994 and now lives and works in the Chicago area. With degrees from Sung Shin Women's University in Seoul, South Korea (BFA) and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (BFA, MFA), she is an award-winning artist whose work has been exhibited in the United States, Canada, and Korea. She is a published author and illustrator, an exhibit curator, and current president of the Korean-American Artist Association of Chicago. In recent years, she made use of dried food and discarded herbs as a medium for her installations. As part of her own healing process, Choi began to explicitly embrace sorrow in her work. She describes it "like an oyster that makes a pearl out of pain. Through my suffering, I came to experience the fragility of life. Jesus died for our sin and offers strength that helps us resolve life's struggles. I want to express, through my work, that Jesus' healing sacrifice is the way to make order out of chaos and bring beauty from pain."
Rev. Dr. Esther DongJin Kim was born in South Korea to a mother who had greatly desired a child for almost 20 years. After a Christian neighbor encouraged them to pray, her parents witnessed God's miraculous answer and came to a deep Christian faith. She has degrees from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (BFA), and Northern Illinois University (MA), Northern Baptist (MDiv) and McCormick Theological Seminary (DMin). Her pastoral calling is to help artists discern and use their artistic talents for God's will and glory in their lives, leading her to found the Hallelujah Christian Art Association in Chicago. Kim has been painting the portrait of Jesus for nearly 40 years. She believes fervently in the spiritual influence of art. "God is the greatest artist of all time. And as our loving Father, He has passed on his creative talent to us. Whatever our talents may be, we must use them to minister Christ's love to the world. Even when we are working for God's mission, we will have troubles. Do not give up. Look not at your feet, but to God for encouragement and strength."
Myungsook Kim was born in South Korea and earned degrees from Ewha Woman's University in Seoul (BFA, MEd) and the Cleveland Institute of Art (BFA). She lives and works in Washington DC area as art instructor at the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore, and served as president of the Han-Mee Artists Association. She shows work regularly in galleries in the US and around the world. By adopting the Asian themes of nature and heaven into textured lines of the physical and abstract forms of the spiritual, Kim's work juxtaposes Eastern and Western styles, creating its own multicultural yet unifying quality. "One of the most important elements in East Asian art in the line. My painting echo and emphasize the calligraphic line. This is a continuous, living line made with one stroke. Like the flowing lines of a delicate flower, God's love flows from east to west and from west to east, permeating all people with peace and hope."