Hye Rim Lee is an Korean interdisciplinary media artist currently working in Seoul, New York, and Auckland. Her work spans from digital, sculpture and performance practices where she develops an animated character Toki, to discuss the ever changing roles of women. Particularly focusing on Asian women, the work showcases the rise of new technology and the spread of heightened interest in Western consumerism and ideals.
Drawing on her multinational background, Hye Rim Lee’s three-dimensional animated videos and photographs explore the interplay between technology and female identity. Through her manga-like figures with their lithe feminine bodies and skintight clothes; her work encompasses exaggerated sexual features more characteristic of Western feminine ideals. These figures stand amidst glassy dragons and phallic forms in blank cyberspaces. The feminizing constraints of the figures’ bodies and the male signifiers reference the conditions of digital production, as Lee views digital media as a male-dominated field. Its creations are therefore subject to the male gaze and its attendant desires.
Hye Rim Lee has exhibited at Kukje Gallery, Seoul, Korea, Max Lang New York, Galerie Volker Diehl, Berlin, Germany, Monte Clark Gallery, Vancouver, MoCA Shanghai, Today Art Museum Beijing, Minsheng Art Museum, Shanghai; MOCA Taipei, Trondheim Kunstmuseum, Norway, Fundacio Joan Miro Barcelona, Spain, Wereld Museum, Rotterdam, Netherlands, San Jose Museum of Art, USA, Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (MMCA) Korea, Seoul Museum of Art (SeMA), Seoul, Korea, The National Taiwan Museum of Fine Arts, Taipei, Govett Brewster Art Gallery New Plymouth, New Zealand. Lee has been part of several collateral exhibitions in the Venice Biennale; "Glasstress", Fondazione Berengo Art Center, “Singularity”, Decentral Art Pavilion Venice Edition, Palazzo Giustinian Lolin, “Light house +” at San Clemente Palace Kempinski, and “Future Pass”, Palazzo Mangilli-Valmarana, Venice, Italy.
Lee is the recipient of the Asia Fund, Creative New Zealand and was a finalist for the 25th Annual Wallace Awards. Her work is collected by Seoul Museum of Art (SeMA) and Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (MMCA) Korea, C-Collection, Principality of Liechtenstein, Galerie Volker Diehl in Berlin, Byron Aceman Collection (BAC) in Canada, Saatchi & Saatchi Worldwide, E&Y corporate collection and Hara Museum in Tokyo, Japan.