Heekyung Kim builds her brightly colored and beautifully textured relief sculptures from thousands of layers of layered hanji paper, a traditional hand made Korean paper known for its archival properties and soft yet strong qualities. Kim layers and forms sheets of hanji with a binding agent to form expressive and active surfaces that ripple like waves or the petals of a flower.


In her Bloom series, Kim finds her inspiration in the buds and petals of flowers and trees, and the multitude of symbolic values that these forms can hold. Within this series there is a beautiful play between abstraction and, in some cases, quite realistic representations of the subject matter. Some pieces simplify the shapes of nature almost to the point of pure geometrical form, however they retain their surface texture and rough edges adding an organic element to the process. Other works, specifically some of her newer sculptures, are more directly representational and relate wonderfuly with the painterly lineage of O'Keefe, using bold color and a delicate sensibility to explore natural forms.



Kim's Contemplation works also turn to nature for their inspiration, focusing on the meditative properties of waves. These works, which take many shapes from wall pieces to standing floor sculptures, use her unique relief technique to develop her skill as a painter in a dynamic three dimensional style. The contemplation series uses the surface texture of the work, rippling waves that capture the motion and energy of waveforms, to expand upon the visual language of two dimensional painting and create a calming space for thought similarly to the ancient practice of reflecting pools.

Installation shots