The resilience of nature has long been a source of inspiration for artists, from Ancient Egypt to contemporary art. In particular, flowers have remained an important symbolic subject for artists to convey social ideals, cultural values, personal emotions, and visions.
<A Blooming Resilience> is a collection of 5 international contemporary artists who create with the lens of resilience through delicate details and bold palettes inspired by the language of flowers. With these works, we are reminded of the tenacious characteristics of sheer beauty– adaptability, perseverance, and reciprocity that enable both nature and humanity to withstand adversity and continue to flourish. Through the cascades of the natural world and its resplendent characteristics, we are invited to consider the shapes of beauty that reconnect with our inner selves and our shared humanity.
Myung-Bo Sim is a world-renowned painter from Korea who focuses on roses. We are showing over 14 original paintings and 9 lithographs that highlight the flexibility of roses with luminous colors that burst with energy and vitality, painted in the late 1990s. With his refined details, Sim emphasizes the sensual layers of the rose as it unfolds, creating a sense of dynamism that suggests the roses are blossoming forth with life. His paintings primarily feature the highlights of his rose garden, exploring light, shape, and color as well as the more ephemeral and timeless qualities of the rose and how it complements even the most mundane things.
“I can only wish that, at this point in my life, my art will bring you such a feeling- a feeling of simple wonder and happiness. In today’s sometimes dismal, dark and confusing world of contemporary art, I hope that you will find comfort in the bright affectionate nature of my rose garden. It is a place of warmth and light.”
- Myung-Bo Sim
Artist Michael De Feo works in phases making distinct bodies of work over periods of time. His new and current series is a transition to painting on canvas. Utilizing acyclic, oil, and oil stick, the paintings are joyous and exuberant, their surfaces crackling with energy. These new paintings showcase De Feo’s push toward a more gestural abstraction while still referencing his long-held interest in flowers and beauty in the ephemeral.
Seongmin Ahn focuses on the beauty of durability from her own intimate narratives in finding tension and balance between East and Western cultural values and norms. Using peony flowers and significant symbols, which are rooted in traditional Korean Minhwa–folk painting, she experiments and expands the boundaries of the characteristics of traditional painting styles and her own resilience and capacity.
Hye Rim Lee is a multimedia artist from New Zealand whose three-dimensional animated videos and photographs speak to the symbology of two opposing states to find the beauty that is found and remains in brokenness. Lee’s dazzling ‘White Rose Series’ shares a testament to fortitude and ability to withstand inhospitable environments. Born from her previous media art ‘The Black Rose,’ Lee underscores the transformative process where a lone thorned rose can push its way through a crack in the pavement and figuratively result in great vitality and eternal light.
Heidy Sumei Chuang is a Taiwanese American Artist who works with floral design and painted media. Her field of roses, painted en plein air on the Mount of Olives in Israel, creates a sanctuary for reflection through their delicate formation in watercolor and natural rock pigments. The light that protrudes through the spaces of overlay and convergence with each flower, reveals symbols of purity, hope, and optimism that can sustain us through even the darkest of times. Using natural rock pigments, Chuang created a paradox painting leaves that represent beauty arising from ashes.
“The humble flower that grows in a gutter in Israel, fed from a single drop of water; the only rose garden on the dusty Mount of Olives; the ancient, sacred space dwarfed by Wall Street; the new life that blooms even in broken relationships. The abundance that blooms when you least expect it is right around the corner if only we would slow down to notice it. Their silent poetry whispers that beauty can arise from ashes and hope blooms.”