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A juxtaposition of human relationships in nature

Throughout her career, Su Bok Kim has developed an immense love for trees. As such, for her latest exhibition at ArtistSpace in Makati, there was no need for the artist to look far for inspiration.

Su Bok Kim, a Korean visual artist based in the Philippines, and her love for these perennial plants is the heart of her 10th solo exhibition entitled “Harmony.”

More interestingly, however, she paints not only the forests she has seen and felt, but also compares relationships of humans with nature.

“Just as branches grow gnarled and tangled, and just as diverse plants grow in one place, so do humans. Human relationships grow complicated, tangled up, and bring us pain all because of our differences, because of our inability to find harmony together,” the artist noted.

This in mind, Kim gains inspiration from nature by overlapping her strokes, taking in every unique dot and detail, all to reach and create her own new dimension—one that she said begins and ends with nature.

Kim stresses that Harmony is her lively and abstract impressionist view on nature. She draws out segments of forests, and gives attention to every single detail using the style of pointillism—where countless dots and points, tiny circles of various colors come together to form one bigger picture.

Despite consisting of endless dots and points, the paintings all blend together in harmony just as nature does. As the artist shared, “No matter what direction different tree branches grow, no matter how many tangles they gain, they continue to coexist peacefully in the landscape.”

“The uniqueness of the overlapping trees, the sheer volume of them, are in fact what create a new dimension, a new image,” she continued.

Furthermore, the artist paints trees of different seasons: from forest floors filled with leaves, to lush green springs, and to bright trees against dark night skies. A love and respect for the complexities of nature is quite clear in her works.

“The story of the trees is a timeless one; it continues through the months and years, even without an audience,” Kim finally noted.

A graduate of Master’s degree in Fine Arts from Mok-Won University, South Korea, Su Bok Kim has had nine prior solo exhibitions including: “Relationship” at Gallery89, Paris in 2017; “Story of Trees” at ArtistSpace, Manila in 2016; “We…” at Morris Gallery, Daejeon in 2014; “Life from Chaos” at Sofia National Gallery, Bulgaria in 2012, and several other exhibitions around South Korea.

Harmony will be on view at the ArtistSpace until July 15.

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