Press released August 29, 2015
SEONGMIN AHN SOLO EXHIBITION 2015
Curated by Sunny Sunhwa Shin
Date: September 3rd – October 7, 2015
Opening Reception: Thursday September 10th, 6 – 8pm
Art Mora gallery is pleased to announce the first solo exhibition of Seongmin Ahn with Art Mora. Ahn is a well known Korean-American folk painter and educator in NYC.
Ms. Ahn's recent works, the Gun series, the Dessert Bouquet series, the Dessert Series and the Scroll installation will all be unveiled in this exhibition.
Artwork reflects the life of the artist and his/her ideal world. The journey of Seongmin Ahn, who is an immigrant from South Korea, was long and lonely as an artist and new member of a family. Her life was like living in the Cold War a constant battle between her idealistic and realistic thoughts of the world in her mind.
Ms. Ahn keeps all the knowledge acquired from her life and transforms them into her paintings. All of her paintings are self-portraits representing moments in which her audience can relate. Scar, Memory and Transcendence (installation piece), represents the life in a capital oriented world, in which we dream, achieve, lose, hurt, suffer and transcend. For this piece, Ahn took a very long time to paint and carve out parts of the painting. This was a very nerve racking process because one brush stroke or carving can ruin the entire painting. It could be said that this process of creation is similar with our lives; building up relationships, reputation, or wealth is a very hard and slow process, but with one minor mistake or moment all of it could be destroyed. Inter_Relation_selfie (a gun series) is a group of objects, representing the world we live in. The gun represents power in society or wealth; the flowers emerging from the gunpoint are endurance, a tacit agreement; the sweets represent artificial materials; and the empty word balloons represent silence or abet. Although Ahn's paintings are soft and beautiful they symbolize harsh realities of life.
Seongmin Ahn’s painting can be categorized in a contemporary Minhwa, which is a new genre of painting with roots from the Korean folk art from eighteen to nineteen centuries. Ahn creates her own style by changing the positioning and design of the traditional style to convey a modern meaning. Ahn wants to deliver profound philosophical questions about life in its reality, spirituality and transcendence through her artworks.
SeongminAhn received B.F.A. and M.F.A. in Asian traditional painting from Seoul National University in Seoul Korea and then received the second M.F.A from Maryland Institute College of Art. She is a recipient of a grant from Pollock Krasner Foundation and the first prize from AHL foundation. She has been also reviewed on Washington Post (Washington D.C.), the Philadelphia Inquirer, NY Arts magazine, Baltimore Sun (Baltimore), Plain Dealer (Cleveland) and others. She had exhibited nationally and internationally including solo shows including but not limited to Delaware Center for the Contemporary Arts (Wilmington, DE), Queens College Art Center (Flushing, NY), Gallery Ho (New York, NY), White Wall Gallery (Seoul, Korea) and Gomez Gallery (Baltimore, MD). She also has taught Asian traditional painting at different institutions such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Queens Museum of Art, Art Students League and Korean Cultural Service.