Korean Artist Project

The Eyes of Artist, Interview with KANG Hyung Koo

posted 04 June 2017


On Korean Artist Project 2011, Youngeun Museum of Contemporary Art presents  the exhibition of Kang, Hyung Koo_The Eyes of Artist. Kang is a long-term resident artist of the Youngeun Artist Management Program (YAMP). 


Kang, who paints contemporary human figures as  meditative portraits, creates exaggerated or simplified portraits. Through such expression, Kang’s portraits can be interpreted as a way to convey the spirit of the times beyond the reflection of the inner side of a person, as shown in traditional portraits. In order to avoid just depicting the outer appearance of the figure, he focuses on expressing the figure's eyes and facial expressions by removing actual colors and instead replacing mono-colors after deciding specific colors of each figure.


Such effort reaches its peak through the depiction of the eye expressions; the artist has intense aspiration for the medium that can communicate with the audience and the artist himself through the deep expression of figure's eyes, and its eyes lead the audience to a different world beyond reality. The artist places the figures of famous artists such as Leonardo da Vinci, Van Gogh, and Andy Warhol, into his own eyes of the self-portrait, thus creating his own stories and the communication between the artists' lives and the audience. For instance, by remaking the self-portrait of Yoon Dooseo, a Korean literary artist, Kang focuses on the feeling of the historic artist’s eyes, presenting them with a peculiar energy that feels as though the figure is trying to communicate with the viewer.

Written by Ji Min LEE

Korean Artist Project


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