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Two Reflections:  Korean and American Artists Confront Humanity and Nature image

Two Reflections: Korean and American Artists Confront Humanity and Nature

The Korean Cultural Center Washington, D.C. proudly presents Two Reflections: Korean and American Artists Confront Humanity and Nature, a new joint exhibition featuring works by two accomplished artists, one American and one Korean: Don Kimes and Suh Yongsun. Two Reflections draws thematic connections and contrasts between the visual languages of these artists, each of whom portrays a common sense of anguish brought about by different fundamental and inescapable forces in life: nature and humanity. 

While Kimes’ work reflects on recovering his creative life in the wake of a natural disaster, Suh explores the universal struggle of individuals to live in just harmony with society. Both of these forces are integral components of the human experience, and both artists arrive at a similar creative destination despite being culturally and stylistically distinct – a sublimation of their cultural differences to the universality of their artistic languages. 

Admission to the opening reception including talks by the artists on Friday, Dec. 8 at 6:00 p.m. is free and open to the public, but registration is required (below). No registration require during  regular walk-in hours. Two Reflections will remain on view through Jan. 24, 2018. 

Two Reflections: Korean and American Artists Confront Humanity and Nature

WHAT: Art exhibition, artist talks, & public opening reception

WHODon Kimes and Suh Yongsun

WHEN: Opening Reception: Friday, December 8 at 6:00 pm

On View: Dec. 8, 2017 – Jan. 24, 2018 (open M-F, 9am-noon & 1:30-5:30pm)

WHERE: Korean Cultural Center Washington, D.C. (2370 Massachusetts Ave. NW)

HOW: Free RSVP to the opening reception (below), or walk-in during regular hours. 

NOTE: Doors open at 5:30pm and the program starts at 6:00pm, including artist talks 6:00-6:30pm.


About the Artists

Don Kimes has been transforming and reinventing the sense of destruction and loss (caused by a devastating flood of his home and studio years ago) into something positive. As Kimes says now, 'the flood was a gift.' According to Kimes, this experience with the power of nature helped him realize that human material possessions are ultimately transient, and that everything is eventually reclaimed by nature. Since the flood claimed twenty-five years of his life's work, Kimes now uses the distorted form and structure of the images that were damaged, while incorporating the fundamental expressive elements of light and color in order to realize his unique contemporary style.

Kimes is currently Professor of Art at American University in Washington, D.C., where he served as head of the studio art program for 18 years, and has also worked as an artistic director at The Chautauqua Institution in New York since 1986. He has been in residence at the American Academy in Rome, SACI in Florence, Yellowstone, Latvia and many others.  He has participated in numerous exhibitions including the Brooklyn Museum, Corcoran Museum, the Katzen Museum, the Rueda Museum (Madrid), the Biennale Internazionale di Firenze (Florence, Italy), Rocca Paolina (Perugia), Living Art (Milan), America Haus (Munich), Casa di Cultura Mossa (Mexico), and dozens of other exhibitions internationally. He is represented by Denise Bibro Fine Art in New York City. For more on this artist, visit www.donkimes.com.

Don Kimes

Blues for Gretna, mixed media on canvas, 48 x 36 inch, 2017

Don Kimes

Sky, mixed media on canvas, 12 x 12 inch

Don Kimes 

Palette, mixed media on canvas, 68 ½ x 51 ½ inch

Suh Yongsun explores fundamental human narrative themes such as myth, history, war, urban life, and self-portraiture through his vibrant colors and brushless technique, creating evocative scenes of humanity. A central factor in his work is human self-reflective inquiry, such as one’s internal conflicts, aspirations, anguish, and relationship with the environment. Suh often visualizes scenes of society and individuals, including the history of people moving through cities. In this exhibition entitled Goguryeo Painting, Suh presents a new work inspired by a stay in China. Although the ancient Korean kingdom of Goguryeo once extended well into present day China, there is little or no trace of it there today. Suh imagines a new space created by the flow of time and various peoples who have occupied this area over the centuries. 

Suh was a professor at Seoul National University in Korea for 20 years and in 2001 was an invited professor at the Hamburg International Academy of Fine Arts (Pentiment). He was selected as Artist of the Year by the National Museum of Contemporary Art in Korea in 2009, honored by Arko Art Center in 2016, and received the Lee Jung-seob Award in 2014. Since then he has focused on his work while traveling domestically and internationally including to the United States, Germany, Japan, and China. He has held numerous solo and group exhibitions, including at the National Museum of Contemporary Art, Arko Art Center, Kumho Museum, Chosun Gallary, Hakgojae Gallery, White Block Art Center, and New York KIPS Gallery. He received his BFA and MFA from Seoul National University in Korea. For more on this artist, visit www.suhyongsun.com.

Suh Yongsun 

Soldiers, Acrylic on Linen, 210x 323cm, 2017

Suh Yongsun  

At  Ilwang Mountain, Tumen: Tumen Riverside, Acrylic on Linen, 156x267cm, 2017

Suh Yongsun 

Soldier, Acrylic Combined Aluminium on Plywood, 40.5 x 27cm, 2017