Course Description

This interdisciplinary fine arts course results in the development of a body of work around contemporary art topics. Research, concept development and studio practice will combine to broaden your skills and ideas. Stimulating assignments together with experimentation promote analysis and understanding of contemporary art ideas, world cultures and historical periods, and other areas of visual information. Studio production and the communication of concepts visually, verbally and in written form will be combined in this thought-provoking course

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Seoul The Ghetto Series

 These watercolor paintings are my personal project. Since I learned watercolor first when I started painting, Im very familiar with using watercolor. I wanted to paint some townscapes so I choose Seoul especially poor area of the city which is where I am from. Now, Seoul is one of the largest and metropolis cities in the world. It is also the main capital of Asian pop culture too. Most place of Seoul is very fancy but, in the reverse side of the fanciness, there are several poor places and some of them are extremely bad. I am from one of the poor place. I remember when I was very young; I and my family were living in small hillside village. I was too young to remember every single memories but I still can feel the atmosphere of the place and the smell of the air when Im alone and think about it. After my whole family moved to Canada, I had not been there but, last summer, I went to Korea and visited that village. It changed pretty much but I felt very warm there. For sure, a lot of fancy and beautiful places of Seoul are cool too, however; I dont think I can like there more than where Im from. And I would enjoy to paint these place for a long time.    

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Deer Hunting Trophy/Decorative Wall Piece

This is a finished piece in the new series I am working on. I have been constructing my own version of big game trophies. They are mostly two-dimensional works with some three-dimensional qualities to them. I want them to appear mostly as two-dimensional forms of art because the animals themselves are three-dimensional and I want to represent them not necessarily recreate or make a reproduction of them. However, I want the scale of these works to be fairly close to the actual size of the animals I am portraying. I think that it is important to show the size of the animals because in hunting for example the larger the deer the better the souvenir.
These artworks are silhouettes of commonly hunted animals wrapped in fabrics with decorative patterning on the fabric. The fabrics are important to the piece. I feel that hunting and the big game trophies are mostly a male idea and interest. I know this is not always the case, but overall this is the common stereotype that we associate men with the act of hunting. The fabrics can be considered the female part to these works. It is my way of combining the two ideas of the manly hunting trophy and the home decoration aspect of them. I enjoy the clash of these two actions, and together they contrast and compliment each other.

Monday, November 28, 2011

I have been working the past weeks on getting some photo's taken of the work I have done for class. So I wanted to post some of them this week and talk about each piece individually. As a collection the work has over all feelings about things in our lives that overwhelm, but individually the work has specific meanings.

The piece above signifies topics of my own identity. The two strongest elements in my childhood are the bible and music. This work is built in form reference to the high starched collars of the fifteen and sixteen hundreds. I chose this reference because of my feelings for religion/church and classical music being a stuffy and suffocating collar in my life. There is a sense of class and elegance, but the feelings of claustrophobia and stiffness are the key elements for this piece.

I thought this explanation was interesting when thinking about the religious and musical topics that's what I'm adding it here. It is not a definition for the work, just an interesting view point I think.

Elizabethan collar

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

An Elizabethan collar or space collar (many people call it a cone) is a protective medical device worn by an animal, usually a cat or dog. Shaped like a truncated cone, its purpose is to prevent the animal from biting or licking at its body or scratching at its head or neck while wounds or injuries heal.[1]

The device is generally attached to the pet's usual collar with strings or tabs passed through holes punched in the sides of the plastic. The neck of the collar should be short enough to let the animal eat and drink. Although most pets adjust to them quite well, others won't eat or drink with the collar in place and the collar is temporarily removed for meals.[2]

While purpose-made collars can be purchased from veterinarians or pet stores, they can also be made from plastic and cardboard or by using plastic flowerpots, wastebaskets, buckets or lampshades. Modern collars might involve soft fabric trim along the edges to increase comfort and velcro surfaces for ease of attachment removal.

The collars are named from the ruffs worn in Elizabethan times.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Personal Project

For my personal project I am choosing to make a multimedia piece that is mostly collage. I want this piece to have two-dimensional and three-dimensional qualities. I wanted to make an artwork that would be almost like an installation piece and would grow all over a wall. I was thinking of things people use to decorate their homes and a mounted deer head came to mind. I was thinking about something from the natural world. A deer is something that we hunt and manipulate the remains to create something to use as decoration. I'm still working out how I want to approach making this piece.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Personal Project

I am really inspired by motherhood right now and I know that I want my final piece to be about motherhood.  I am not sure what I want to use just yet but I am starting to lean towards doing a collage.  I have explored other ideas, but I think that this is the part of my life that completely consumes me and inspires me.  I don't think this piece will be a portrait I would like for it to be a general portrayal of the beauty of motherhood, but moreso the expression of love.  It is important to me that the emotion is communicated. 

Final Personal Project

During this class I have developed a project that will slowly develop into my senior thesis exhibition. My idea involves taking my father, who is a "collector"/hoarder and using the objects he collects to create a show. At my family home we have a three car garage, green house, and basement which are completely filled with objects my father collects. I have been unable to narrow it down beyond this generalization and know I will be creating a small scale version of this for the final project in this class. The image above is shelving in my house that house a few of the objects my father has collected and given to me over the years. There is a stipulation that everything loaned to me must be returned when I move/die/etc.
The theme of natural versus man made has really interested me because I can implement a variety of mediums and concepts that will fall into that category. The idea of collecting and cataloguing is the medium to which I am attracted to the most right now. In my near future I do not see myself working directly with making art. I don't like the idea of stating the "community" as having a reaction to my artwork unless you're talking about the community of artists that surround us. The percentage of the community that is in Columbus Ohio and will view my project is a very small percentage. I do not have a concise idea on what I want my viewers to walk away with. It is a very personal project right now and I have not taken it past the steps of visualization. Welp, that's all I got for now.


This is a piece that I finished recently. I found this beautiful book of maps and bought it with the full intention of saving it forever and using it as just something to look at and enjoy. I was convinced otherwise, and instead of photocopying the pages and using them in this piece, I used the actual pages. I think the great thing about this is that the rich colors and textures that I loved so much about the book stayed intact in this piece. I wanted the piece to still look like a map but be different enough that it would call for a closer investigation of the piece.
For my personal project I want to keep working on this same idea of mapping. I'm very interested in maps, I think because of the patterns that happen in them. I liked the technique that I used for this piece and I want to continue on with it. It's basically collage and stacking of layers in a grid-like manner. I want to try combining different kinds of maps in the same piece. I definitely need to think more about the concepts behind these pieces. I want them to be about more than just patterns and maps. I need to think more about organization and how to push the familiar into something unfamiliar.

Monday, November 14, 2011

slabs or paint

This is a piece that I have been working that past few weeks in my painting class. I think I am almost finished with it, I think. the entire point of this painting is to break away from my comfort zone with paint, to stretch my thinking and abilities, and to loosen the heck up. I normally work very tight and smooth and this is helping break colors up for me and paint faster in my regular technique as well as learn a new technique. I just wanted to see what you all thought. This piece is more about style and technique than subject matter.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

melted fruits series

These are my recent works that i am still working on. I call them 'Melted Fruits'
In the beginning, when I recalled the melted fruits first time, I was thinking the Grobal Warming.
It was a very hot day. I felt like my body was melting. It was April. It was too early to be hot. It was the moment I sensed Global Warming once again. Some people say global warming is like a fairy tale, but I know it is for real and a fact. I imagined that everything I like was melting. Suddenly, the picture of a melted watermelon came to mind. Watermelon is my favorite thing in summer. I cant even live hot days without it. Global Warming reminds me Image of melted watermelon, and a melted watermelon realizes me the seriousness of the Global Warming. Actually, at first, I made 3D work using sculpey, but I was unfamiliar with sculpey and the final work was not so good. After the summer, suddenly I dicided to paint them on canvas and it was much better than previous one. I still working on this series.   


  This is a sketch of the iconic piece I am working on to express the awkwardness and disfigurement of pregnancy.  I really want to show how pregnancy is being expressed as a false glamour by the media but really is really the exact opposite for most women.  I found this beautiful gold furtility statue that inspired to paint the figure in gold because of how pregnant women seem to be idolized right now.  So I guess I am trying to portray this ugly/ beautiful sense of the female figure during this uncomfortable time of her life. 

Thursday, November 10, 2011

The Evolution Of My Work

These works are still in progress and I hope to create more to have a larger series. They are the evolution of the series of works I did earlier of the six female portraits with no faces. I started off with painting portraits with water color and then sewing them onto leaves. From there I became interested in letting the piece grow by adding other papers, fabric, and lace. I started covering the features of the women, but with materials that still allowed the viewer to see through or underneath in order to show the original painting. The content of these are based on female identity and the revealing and concealing aspect of identity. I want to continue making art that has both two dimensional and three dimensional qualities.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Overwhelming Form

This piece is about being engulfed or overwhelmed by something. Sometimes things in our lives take a hold of us, or surround us so much that we lose ourselves. There has been some debate on the formal elements of this piece, that there is possibly too much of it, but it turned out exactly as I envisioned it. I am obsessed with obsessions. And sometimes our obsessions cover up who we are. Whether it’s the house being clean, or making sure you always have a plan, or never having a plan. At times these things can add to who we are and be a part of our personality. But there are times when we become “overwhelmed” and lose the balance of our personality, obsession, identity or whatever form you want to put it into. More or less this piece is a reflection of my own feelings of being overwhelmed and trying to find the balance in the form. The piece is made form the folded pages of an entire dictionary.

The Senses and Memory.

The idea for the altered book that I am working on stems from my curiosity of how and why we remember things as we do, as a great deal of my work is somewhat memory related. I have started with the 5 senses and how they work, and will continue on how the information they perceive travels to the brain and how it is stored, and retrieved. I wanted to explore this in a book because it is partially an informative piece so it seemed appropriate. So far I have used only pen, but will work with image and text transfers as well as watercolor.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Symbols & Iconography

Symbols and icons are a language all on their own. Although each individual viewer can interpret them based on their own experience, the overall narrative of the symbol is the same. I have created individual allegories worn on the body. These totems, enhanced by textures and rhythms, possess energy that ceremonialize life and natural beauty: each composition is a distinct and tangible poem. When worn, the jewelry allows the individual to make an independent statement without physically saying anything at all.

Iconic Imagery

When I think of Iconic imagery in art, the first thing that comes to mind is Salvador Dali's use of ants. The use of ants comes from a childhood experience of finding a dead bat being consumed by them. This became an icon symbolic of death and decay in his works. When I first learned the meaning behind these symbols I was fascinated by it because at the time I had previously experienced something similar. I have found that a personal icon of mine is dead birds. More specifically the image of a dead bird fetus. On many occasions during the summers of my adolescence, I have found these pitiful looking corpses ripped from their eggs and carried away (I assume by stray cats, as I have never seen them near shell remnants). Soon after these discoveries, I experienced devastatingly traumatic events. These include nervous breakdowns, an hallucinatory episode at the age of 14 (that I now attribute to the extensive stress that I was under) which caused me to doubt my sanity for a matter of weeks, the death of my brother, and a few years later, the death of my mother. The irony of it is that my mother often brought home injured animals and we cared for them together for months. When I was in high school I came home one day to find that she had brought home a baby bird that had fallen out of it's nest determined to get it well enough to fly away. In doing this we learned that it was much more complicated than keeping it in a box and feeding it the occasional worm. Every four hours we took turns mixing up batches of bird formula at specific temperatures and fought with the animal for another half an hour to eat it all. Eventually we set it loose in the living room and found that it was finally able to fly, but when we took it outside and tried to release it the bird refused to go away. It would fly a few feet and then hop back towards us on the ground. So naturally it became our pet. A few days before my mother was murdered I found three of the bird fetuses outside of our apartment. Sometime in the following weeks I found a small bird with an injured wing. I tried to save it as we had done before. I went shopping and found the right formula, got up up twice in the middle of the night every night to feed it, and I carried it around with me in a shoe box everywhere that I went. I must have done something wrong because one day I woke up and to my devastation, found that it was dead. As my thesis has been focused upon death for sometime now, it may seem odd that I have not included this imagery in my art work thus far. I have yet to include this personal icon in my artwork for a number of reasons. The first is that in doing a Memento Mori thesis, my main goal is to express this subject matter effectively while avoiding the typical cliches ripe with the macabre. The second reason is simply because the icon terrifies me. I get a terrible feeling in the pit of my stomach when ever I come across a dead bird. At the discovery of a dead bird fetus I am terrified for weeks that something horrible is soon to happen. I call family members constantly afraid of car accidents, muggings, heart attacks and all the countless possibilities of sudden death. Such is the intensity of my superstition that I avoid dead birds at all costs and I doubt I will ever take in an injured animal ever again. One day I may include this icon in my work because it is a very significant one for me. Perhaps one day this icon will be my version of Dali's ants. But certainly not until I find some way to utilize the image in a manner befitting it's significance to me (Sans cliche) and not until I am emotionally ready to examine the image critically without falling into the painful sadness that I feel even as I write this now.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Iconography and Archetypes

Iconography and Archetypes:Warwick Goble
Red Riding Hood, 1912
Kiki Smith
Rapture, 2001James Jean
Fables Cover Collection Cover Sketch, 2008

A strong image that comes to mind when I think of iconic imagery is that of little red riding hood. It sounds silly but it is an image and idea that I grew up with. For the most part everyone has grown up with the story of little red ridding hood. It is one of the oldest documented fairy tales, and it comes up in art and especially illustration. What is interesting to me is how this image and idea is showing up in contemporary art. I choose the first image of Warwick Goble's version of the tale because it was for the most part a very traditional approach to the idea. Looking at Kiki Smith's version of the story it becomes more personal. The figure has really overcome an obstacle here. It is a great example of this iconic story. Another example I choose is a sketch of James Jean. In this image the figure does not seem to be threatened and the wolf acts more like a protector than the monster.
My point I am trying to make is that a story that our grandparents told our parents who told us is a pretty powerful thing in our human existence. It has the power of connecting us all, and it is a story we will keep telling generations to come. Which to me makes this idea iconic to me.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011


To me an icon is something that represents something significant and important. When I began thinking about art and icons, Janis Mars Wunderlich came to my mind. She is a local ceramic sculpture artist and I believe all of her work are icons representing different moments and thoughts in her life as a mother. This particular piece is about the time in her life when she was thinking/dreaming about what her future children may be like-their personalities, what they would look like, how many she may have, etc. Her work is fascinating to me. I love how it is very personal to her, but really represents how most mothers feel. I find my work slowly starting to become about memory and place, and I feel like I use pieces of specific places or landscapes in my art in a somewhat iconic way.


When I think of something or someone being iconic it makes me think of trends in media and also reoccurring figures that never really go away.  I immediately thought of how much I constantly see motherhood being portrayed in artwork.  I see it being depicted from different points of view, being either very sensual or very innocent.  Motherhood and pregnancy always seems to be a fascination no matter what the time frame may be, but mothers have been iconic for years for artists.  I saw a picture of Tia Mowry and the title of the article was about her embracing her sexuality in her pregnancy.  It made me think of being a mother and just how much every aspect of pregnancy is completely consuming.  I would love for my artwork to embody mental or even the physical consumption of carrying a baby.  Most likely it should be an abstraction of how awkward it really is.  When I see these sensual sexual photographs of mother's it just reminds me how I completely felt opposite of sexy and that's what I want my artwork to be about.  It should be realistic. 

Iconic Image in Popular Media/Art

I chose Michael Jackson's glittery diamond glove because I think it encompasses being an icon and an artistic being. It made seem like a joke but I think this is a very important piece of popular culture. This is an icon that has surpassed decades of change in artistic style and standards. In the general term of icon it is an a person or thing regarded as a representative symbol of something. To me and relating to my art Michael Jackson's glove has influenced me and my family in inexplicable ways. It makes us happy and it gives us jokes to make in turn gives me good ideas to positively work on art and make it humorous at the same time. I would use it in my future work as a main focus of the entire gallery. I discussed with a friend completely making another replica of a glove and treating it as the real iconic glove.


The dictionary defines an icon as "a sign or representation that stands for its object by virtueof a resemblance or analogy to it." So really and icon can be anything that relates to or is similar to something else in any way. I would say that in art there are two types of icons, personal and communal. There are certain icons or symbols that everyone one in our culture understands to represent a certain thing. It could possibly have a different meaning in a different culture. But, as an example, an apple in our culture often represents something forbidden. But in another culture it could represent something entirely different. These culturally understood icons are communal icons. Personal icons would be those objects or symbols that are related to something personal and that would not necessarily be understood by the public as a whole. For example, i might use a certain object in a piece of art that represents a memory that I have.
There are different ways that i have used icons in my own work. One way is that i often use images of women in my collages. In different collages the images of the women represent different things. Sometimes they represent a general femininity, other times they represent idolized beauty, or birth, or oppression. The other images or icons that I use along with the women also changes what they represent. I think that the use of certain colors can also be iconic. Color is something I also think about a lot in my pieces.

Personal Icons

These two Images are from a woman who has made a neck piece from a memento of a loved one. When I was researching icons i found myself being drawn back to thing that people use to remember personal experiences. I was drawn to this work because of the colors. I will be working on my icon based on a personal experience and memory so I thought I would post something that was like what I wanted to do.
The green ribbon has no real meaning in this piece it just holds the shell up. But the Shell was a souvenir that the woman had from a vacation she took with her husband. The couple had been married for 30 some years. On the way home from their trip they were in a car accident and he was killed. Out of the wreckage one of the things that was unbroken was this shell. She had it laid into silver pieces and placed on a ribbon in memory of her husband. She talked about how this shell was an "icon" to her for their relationship. It was delicate and in need of care, but very loved.
Now let me say that after i found this someone told me that they had seen this neck piece somewhere else and that this story wasn't true. But either way I think that this can work with the Icon theme that we are talking about. This Shell is now ( possibly) an Icon for this woman's relationship. And for me that fact that it's a personal icon is very interesting. I think it's fascinating to see art from one person's perspective and story.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011


This sculpture has quite a few iconic objects in it. The shape of the body is a Kong (dog toy). The shape and color of the woven piece suggests the size and shape of a dog ear. There are dog tags and a small dog-training collar, which are contemporary icons in this particular scenario. Furthermore the sculpture itself is a reliquary as it actually holds relics of the dog.