S A B I N A L E E G A L L E R Y
July 27 - Aug 17
Opening reception July 27, 6-9pm
Sabina Lee Gallery is pleased to present "Geo Series" a solo exhibition featuring Whi-Boo Kim.
When Whi-Boo Kim first travelled to the U.S. to pursue his art career, he became fixated inwards amidst the conflicts, anxieties and alienations experienced in a foreign environment. His work reflected the existential distresses of immigration and he viewed his position, despite his efforts, as nomadic. This experience has long passed for Kim, but it provided a motive that is still apparent in his process today.
Kim places an importance in the previous lives of his materials. In "Geo Series," Kim gathers abandoned material into a forum where the individual fragments of various histories can reimagine themselves. Frames are made from splintered wood found at earthquake sites, from fallen old trees, and from worn cutting boards found in neighborhood sales. Each piece of material, having had, and somewhat lost, its own unique life, is provided with a rebirth of context through process.
Continuously mixing, sanding, and grinding the layers of his work; letting glue flow to paste and unite objects; and wrapping everything in a thick, deliberate frame is a process that Kim sees as similar to carpentry. An architectural plane is the achievement of his process, though the resulting image is somewhat archeological. The cracks and strata that result on his plane from the repeated labor of erasing and reconstructing his materials evoke a type of fossil. Through this mixture of architecture and excavation Kim achieves a unique process of labor that serves symbolically to the past and future of transitory moments in life.
As a child, Whi-Boo Kim would become immersed in a strange feeling when turning a globe. The truth of the earth, presented spinning on its axis, clashed with his perceptions of the space around him. This, Kim says, and the fact that he has not changed his address or phone number over the past twenty years, provides insight into his work.