Make Room presents a solo exhibition of Guimi You new large-scale paintings at its new Los Angeles gallery space (5119 Melrose Avenue, Los Angeles) from September 4 to October 2.
Trained in Korean portraiture and landscape art (San-su hwa) at Seoul National University and painting at the Royal College of Art, You’s practice combines the lucidity and richness of both techniques, resulting in canvases reveling in the beauty of natural environments and the communication of joy through pigment.
After shifting her focus to small-scale, acrylic-based work at the onset of the pandemic, Guimi You’s exhibition, “Color Me,” signals her return to large-scale, oil-based paintings.
The exhibition explores a fascination with the surrounding landscapes of Northern California and celebrates the domestic surrealism of her experiences as a mother. You’s paintings blend and blur reality and daydreams with a sense of magical realism. They astound in their intimacy and playfulness. Immersing herself in a world of kid’s toys, clothes and coloring books, she began to emphasize the playful abstractions already present in her work.
The exhibition’s eponymous painting is indicative of this shift. You’s large figural composition replaces topography—the colors of her dress and the shadows on her neck mirroring the palette of the space around her. The limited palette is a nod to color-by-number books, and the presence of dinosaur toys alludes to the influence of motherhood.
Even within this seemingly domestic image, perspective, line and form create an atmosphere of unbridled, fiery energy.
“My thoughts and feelings are images, not writings,” Guimi You said. “To express them, I need to implant a dry white canvas with colors and forms from inside myself. The process is like a surgery that takes place under tension. The transplanted images live forever in a new organ called a painting.”
Guimi You “Color Me” will be one of two exhibitions to open Make Room’s new 2,500-square-foot location in the heart of Hollywood at 5119 Melrose Avenue, Los Angeles, The flexible space was designed to create intimacy with the artwork on view. Set back from the street, Make Room is just steps away from the famous Paramount Pictures Studios.
About the Artist
Guimi You (b. 1985 in Seoul, lives and works in Albany, AC) received her MA in painting from the Royal College of Art, London in 2014, and holds a BFA and an MFA in Korean portraiture and landscape art (San-su hwa) from Seoul National University, Korea in 2008 and 2011.
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