In a darker image, Blue Jean Blues – O Yun (2012), Kim employs black and crimson to induce tension. This still life includes an assault rifle, two bowls, and a severed arm, which at first glance appears to be smeared with blood, but closer inspection reveals bold tattooed images in shiny ink. The black drawings that form the background and surface on which these objects sit, are rendered with what appear to be splattered, gestural marks, but are actually traditional Asian motifs like hibiscus flowers, spindly trees, reeds, and birds. The titular pair of blue jeans stands upright on a decorative plate, a nexus of desire and commerce and a witness to the work’s suggestions of violence.
A more lighthearted work, Rocker – Kiss (2012) is an image of a white, tattooed sculptural hand resting on a glossy, ornate black-and-white dish. The hand, adorned with black nail polish, approximates a heavy-metal salute, with complementary imagery from the hard rock band KISS—including their logo, a group portrait of the band, and an image of bassist Gene Simmons sticking out his infamously long tongue—etched into its surface.