Plastic Jogakbo #14

Yeon Jin Kim


Yeon Jin Kim is a visual artist and filmmaker, born in South Korea and based in New York City.

Kim received a BFA in sculpture from Seoul National University and an

MFA in combined media from Hunter College.

Kim's most recent solo exhibition was held in 2020 at Gallery Mak in Seoul, South Korea. Other recent solo shows have been at the Society for Domestic Museology in New York, Albright College in Reading, PA and at the Cluster Gallery in Brooklyn, all in 2019.

Her films have recently been screened at the Philadelphia Asian Film Festival, New Filmmakers New York, Blow-Up Arthouse Film Fest Chicago and at the Glimmerglass Film Festival in Cooperstown, NY.

Her work was featured in the book "50 Contemporary Women Artists", edited by Heather Zises and John Gosslee, published by Schiffer Publishing in 2018.

She has done residencies at Outpost Artist Resources, the Teton Art Lab, the Winter Workspace Program at Wave Hill, the Kimmel Harding Nelson Center for the Arts, the Fountainhead Residency, Columbus State University, I-Park, the Abrons Arts Center, Bric/Bcat, the Islip Museum, Sculpture Space, the Saltonstall Foundation and Yaddo.

Kim's multi-disciplinary practice encompasses animated films shot from miniature sets,  cut-paper works, drawings and Jogakbo (Korean traditional quilting) inspired plastic quilts. Her work is equally influenced by her early life in South Korea and her last fifteen years in New York City. 

Most recently, she formed an artist collaborative team, Jeju Island - Artist Collective, with Kyung-Jin Kim and Eunsun Choi. Jeju Island has received a grant from the Queens Council on the Arts and City Artist Corp grants from NYFA for their project “Radical Self Care for the Age of Ultra Anxiety”, which will be showcased in Bliss on Bliss Art Project Space. 

Kim currently teaches at Fairleigh Dickinson University and Westchester Community College. 

Yeon Jin Kim’s practice is based on traditional techniques put to new uses. Kim makes scroll drawings and constructs miniature models and characters from cardboard, paper, and other materials. She then uses them to film narrative videos. This deliberately low-tech process is often combined with various animation techniques. 

Kim’s two recent video pieces are a ghost story and a monster/comedy. “Ghost in the Yellow House” is based on Kim’s cousin’s experience moving to upstate New York from Korea to live with her husband and newborn child. As she experiences alienation, language issues and social isolation, her American dream disintegrates and she experiences a hostile ghost in the form of white woman. 

In “Monster Me”’ an ancient monster emerges from the “ Old Faithful” geyser in Yellowstone National Park and flies to Jackson Hole. It then attacks the artist at the Teton Art Lab Residency, devouring her. As it flies back to the geyser, the monster and the artist slowly merge into one. 

These recent videos have been influenced by her experience of being an immigrant in the United States.

As a child, Kim was introduced to Jogakbo by her aunt who owned a Hanbok (Korean traditional garment) shop. Jogakbo developed as a way for lower-class people to wrap gifts for weddings and other celebratory events in the 17-19th centuries. Scrap pieces of fabric were stitched together, much like quilts, to create attractive wrappings. Kim’s aunt was particularly talented and her Jogakbo were lovely and visually sophisticated. Examples were gifted to family members and Kim’s mother passed hers down to her. 

In updating this traditional Korean art form she is stitching together pieces of commercial plastic bags and also drug baggies she finds on the streets where she lives. As in traditional Jogakbo, the scrap elements have all been used, and are sewn together to create compositions influenced by the lived reality of her neighborhood folk.

Solo Exhibitions

2021 Radical Self Care for the Age of Ultra Anxiety, Jeju Island-Artist Collective Project, Bliss on Bliss Art Project Space, Queens, NY

2020 Konglish, Place Mak, Seoul, South Korea

2019 Konglish, Society for Domestic Museology, New York, NY

2019  Disjointed Fable, Freeman Gallery, Albright College, Reading, PA

2019  Yeon Jin Kim : Short Stories , curated by C.C. Marsh, Cluster Gallery, Brooklyn, NY

2018  En Route, 2-person exhibition with Ted Lot, Curated by Sydney Waller and Megan Irving, Smithy, 

          Cooperstown, NY

2016  Fantastic Animation, Eagle Gallery, Murray State University, Murray, KY

2014  Imaginative World of Yeon Jin Kim, Biggin Gallery, Auburn University, Auburn, AL

2014  Fantastic Animation, Illges Gallery, Columbus State University, Columbus, GA

2013  Based on True Story, 3-person Show,  Marshall  Arts, Memphis, TN 

2012  Based on True Story, 3-person Show, Downtown Gallery, University of Tennessee, Knoxville

2012  Spaceship Grocery Store, Hunterdon Museum of Art, Clinton, NJ   

2010  All Intellectual Animals Are Dangerous, Lab Gallery, New York, NY

2010 Three Dreams, Brighthill Press, Delhi, NY

2009  View Points: Artifice and Reality, 2 Person Show, Catskill Art Society, Livingston Manor, NY

Group Exhibitions

2021   Group Exhibition, Art Space Hue, Paju, Korea 

2020  Cuts and Burns Online Screening Series, New York, NY

           Flat File 2020, Peep Space, Tarrytown, NY

           Winter Workspace 10 Year Anniversary: Returning to the Source, Wave Hill, Riverdale, NY

           Unsustainable: A Planet in Crisis, Ewing Gallery, University of Knoxville, Knoxville, TN

2018   Postmodernism and Aesthetics : Collide or Steer? , Gallery Korea, Korean Cultural Center, New York, NY

2016   Camera Lucida, Auburn Museum, Auburn, AL

2014   Drawn Into Other Worlds, Metropolitan Community College, Omaha, NE

          International Conference Art and Nature, video screening curated by Hogo Fortes and Jessica Ullrich,   

           Biblioteca Brasillian USP, Sao Paulo, Brazil

          Voyage, Golden Thread Gallery, West Hartford, CT

2013  Foundry Film + Video Series, The Foundry for Art, Design + Culture, Cohoes, NY

2012  Collage Logic, Hampden Gallery, Umass Amherst, MASS

           Everything is Falling Apart, Curated by Matthew Garrison, Thomas Hunter Project Space,

              Hunter College, New York, NY

2011  In Process, OMNI Gallery, Uniondale, NY

          Lost, Curated by Amy Smith-Stewart, Invisible Exports, New York, NY

          Collage Logic, Governor’s Island, New York, NY

          AIR Space, Henry Street Settlement, New York, NY

2010  Videorover, Nuture Art, Brooklyn, NY

          PixelPops, Screening in Public Space, New York, NY

          Apertures: Outopia, Eutopia and Other Spaces,  Gallery 4 Walls, Seoul, Korea

          You Can’t Do That on TV, Site Festival, Brooklyn, NY

          Utopia in Utica, Islip Museum, East Islip, NY

2009  Mieterwechsel, Knopffabrik, Zwickau, Germany

          Eclectic Visionaries, AHL Foundation Award Exhibition, New York, NY

          Collage Logic, Storefront Artists Project, Pittsfield, MA

          Part I, Cabernet Initiative. Brooklyn, NY 

2008  Collage Logic, Ann Street Gallery, Newburgh, NY

          to: Night, Times Square Gallery at Hunter College, New York, NY

          ARTEXPO, New York, NY

          Last Picture Show, ArtFormz, Miami, FL 

2007  Deviant Behavior, ArtFormz, Miami, FL  

          Hun International, Hun Gallery, New York, NY 

Film Festival

2019   Official Selection  "Monter Me", Blow-Up Arthouse Film Festival, Chicago, IL

2019   Official Selection  "Ghost in the Yellow House", Yonkers International Film Festival, Yonkers, NY

2019   Official Selection  "Ghost in the Yellow House", South Europe International Film Festival, Valencia, Spain

2019   Official Selection  "Ghost in the Yellow House", Aphrodite Film Festival, New York, NY

2018   Official Selection "Monster Me" Veritas Film Festival, Phillipsburg, PA

2018   Official Selection "Monster Me", Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival, Philadelphia, PA

2018   Honorable Mention  "Monster Me", London-Worldwide Comedy Short Festival AUTUMN

2018   Official Selection  "Ghost in the Yellow House", New Filmmakers NY, New York, NY

2018   Official selection "Ghost in the Yellow House", Glendale International Film Festival, Glendale, CA

2010   Giguk Video Art Festival, Germany 

2008    5th Annual Reel Venus Film Festival 2008, Anthology Film Archives, New York, NY

2008    Detour – Third International Video Festival, Cairo,2008, Medar for Contemporary Arts, Cairo, Egypt 


 2021 City Artist Corps Grant, NYFA, New York, NY

 2021 Grant, Queens Council on the Arts, (for Jeju Island Artist Collective), Queens, NY

 2009 Artist Grant, Tony Smith Fund, Hunter College, New York, NY

 2009 AHL Foundation  Artist Grant, New York, NY

Fellowship/ Visiting Artist/ Artist in Residence

 2017 The Artist House at St. Mary’s  College of Maryland, St. Mary’s City, MD

 2017 Cuts and Burns Residency Program, Outpost, Ridgewood, NY

 2017 Wave Hill Winter Workspace Program, Bronx, NY

 2016 Teton Art Lab, Jackson, WY

 2015 Kimmel Harding Nelson Center for the Arts, Nebraska City, NE

 2015 Fountainhead Residency Program, Miami, FL

 2014 Visiting Artist, Auburn University, Auburn, AL

 2014 Visiting Artist, Southern Polytechnic State University, Marietta, GA

 2014 Visiting Artist and Scholar Residency Program, Columbus State University, Columbus, GA

 2013 I-Park Residency Program, East Haddam, CT

 2010-2018 Visiting Artist, Rockland Community College, Nyack, NY

 2010-2011 Artist in Residence Workspace Program, Henry Street Settlement, New York, NY

2010 In Process, Artist Residency, Islip Museum, East Islip, NY

2009 Artist in Residence, Sculpture Space, Utica, NY

2009 BCAT/BRIC Rotunda Gallery Video Program, 2009-2010, Brooklyn, NY

 2009 Visiting Artist, Munson-Williams-Proctor Arts Institute, Utica, NY

2009 Visiting Artist, Mohawk Valley Community College, Utica, NY

 2009 Residency Fellowship, Constance Saltonstall Foundation, Ithaca, NY

 2009 Residency Fellowship, Yaddo, Saratoga Springs, NY

Jogakbo is Korean traditional quilts or patchwork. This Plastic Jogakbo series is an update and celebration of Korean women's craftwork.

Year: 2021

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