Nature, culture, and emotion:Objects of wood, metal, and stone

Hong, Sunki
Major Professor
Mark Chidister
Committee Member
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Art and Design

The eleven art works made during my masters program share similar themes and were created using a similar process.

The concepts for my art begin with searching nature, looking at the natural environment that surrounds me to find something of interest. I start with nature because of the infinite range of intimate subjects it possesses; there is always something that grasps me at that moment among the trees, flowers, and birds in every season. When I find that interesting element it reminds me of a certain song, poem, or myth from Korean culture emerging from accumulated knowledge and memories, from conscious and unconscious education, and from customs. `My own unique element' is born by projecting my emotional feelings as an artist, a mother, and a woman into the artwork. This is the first step of building my concepts.

These observations, memories, feelings, and ideas lead to a series of rough sketches to develop the concept. While drawing, I recite the poem, sing the song, or remember the story hundreds of times. The sketches become progressively more specific and descriptive of the concept. Based on the rough sketches, I start to make a model to test the concept and anticipate problems that could happen while making the piece. Finally, all of the images and information for the artwork are gathered and organized on a final presentation board which generally includes a concept statement, rough sketch, final design drawing, and the materials to be used. The presentation boards help me keep the way more clearly in focus until the artwork is completed.

These eleven artworks were all completed through this common process. These steps are sometimes switched a little, but I always start looking at the natural environment. The scope of the elements and the concepts that I find in the grandeur of nature lead gradually to elements from Korean culture and my subjective view as an artist, mother, and woman. I hope that people might feel and meet nature, Korean culture, and my personal artistic view through these artworks.