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Wonsook Kim

MARCH 11 - APRIL 8, 2023


Opening Reception | March 11, 2023, 3-6pm
Artist Talk | March 11, 2023, 5:30pm

This exhibition showcases a number of series of paintings and works on paper by artist Wonsook Kim (b. 1953, Busan, Korea), who resides and works in Clarksville, Maryland. 

Shatto Gallery is pleased to present Days of Miracle, paintings and sculptural works by artist Wonsook Kim, her first solo exhibition with the gallery. Kim’s paintings are distinguished by an immense collection of visual diaries, echoing notions of the quotidian and the sensational, authentic and fantastical in a playful, candid manner. The artist devotedly pairs elements of nature and universal symbols as a perpetual act of bridging the multiple worlds her life embodies. Depictions of such narratives seek to find universality of human desires to experience connection, wonder, and sense of belonging. The artist strives to confess her autobiographical stories through painting avatars of her alter ego in various spatial contexts like House, Landscape, Forest, Wilderness. Perhaps it’s Kim’s persevering desire to reconcile placelessness with new roots established in her home abroad. To remedy this further, she translates and draws on the oral traditions passed down from women in her family like her grandmothers with the hopes to cease her ever-evolving identity. 


Kim notes that her work will always be a balance of lights and shadows, resilience and vulnerability, and what is seen and unseen. Her bronze sculptures (personally referred to as “shadow drawings”) that cast brush-made drawing-like shadows exemplify light and shadow in her work. This show illustrates the artist’s unique allegorical interpretations of flight and movement, metaphorized as birds, angels, shadows, wind, wings, etc. In testament to the idea that flight evokes a sense of "otherworldliness" and ceaseless motion, her works summon viewers to perceive life from different angles, lightheartedly emphasizing what life could be, rather than what life is.


Kim’s painterly expression exhales with tenderness and audacity to harmonize traditional calligraphic brush works with Western painting techniques, of which she uses to visualize unseen movements, such as one’s own desires, dreams, and imagination. This exhibition, Days of Miracle, simultaneously seeks to highlight a culmination of remarkable and trivial events that amounted to where her life has arrived at now. Kim looks back on the bygone days and is astonished by her achievements, ability to sustain studio practice and the countless exhibitions she’s had in her career. Show curated by guest curator Grace Ji, cultivates a narrative of longing and discovery through Wonsook Kim’s work in hopes to invite viewers to share the experiences the artist unfolds in her work. 


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