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Kyungmin Park – Ceramic Artist

Kyunming Park

A child’s untamed imagination can create a new and exciting world out of a single object. The combination of an uncorrupted point of view, a strong imagination, overflowing curiosity, and the desire to push boundaries creates a very special mindset particular to children. The adult world, by contrast, restrains the formerly infinite imagination by imposing responsibilities and practical concerns. Society puts limits on the way we as individuals can perceive things, and as an artist I am interested in expanding those confines. Inspired by the perspective of childhood, I seek a sort of regression to a childlike state of mind, so that I can create and explore a place beyond these boundaries.

In my sculptural clay objects, I often include figures in fantastical situations and imaginary worlds. Though the facial expressions of the figures evoke the imagery of childhood, the bodies are adult, suggesting the remnants of the child within the grownup. The coexistence of innocence and experience within one being has an unsettling effect; viewers are made uncomfortable as the whimsical gives way to the darkly bizarre.

Bright colored surfaces attract the eye initially, drawing the viewer into the scene in anticipation of a new experience. However, on looking closer, the viewer faces unpleasant and unexpected movement, actions, or expressions in the figures; he or she must make sense of these anomalies within the rules and restrictions imposed by the experience of adulthood. It is my hope that by combining so many elements of a child’s imagination with those of the adult world –replete with the darker emotions that characterize it– I will create a space for each viewer to have a unique and personal introspective experience.