Skip to main content

Korean Cultural Center New York

Courtesy Korean Cultural Center NY

Jinhee Lee: Boundaries of Existence

June 25 – August 17, 2024
Artist Talk: Tuesday, June 25th, 5-6pm
Opening Reception: Tuesday, June 25th, 6-8pm

We are proud to host the exhibition Boundaries of Existence by Jinhee Lee, professor in the Department of Stage Design at the Korea National University of Arts and award-winning costume designer of films and Korean dramas.

The exhibition will feature a total of 43 works, including stage design pieces from Jinhee Lee’s career since 1999, traditional Korean costume designs for film, and her sculptures, paintings, and media art. Jinhee Lee began her career in theater and has since become a renowned costume designer, creating characters through their “clothing” across various media, including films, dramas, and dance performances. Her collaborations include works with the most prestigious film director, Chan Wook Park’s Life is But a Dream, a historical spectacle film that won the best costume design award Ansisung, and numerous stage costumes ranging from classical works to experimental shows. She is widely recognized for her ability to modernize traditional Korean aesthetics.


Courtesy Korean Cultural Center NY

In this exhibition, Lee combines sculptural characteristics with three-dimensional media to emphasize a dynamic and immersive experience. Her unique artistic style is based on the craft of ‘hand stitching’ traditional Korean fabric pieces, creating distinctive sculptural forms. These forms, inspired by early Joseon Dynasty folk paintings, feature bold colors and optimistic humor, delivering a sensory delight through the use of vibrant primary colors. Lee’s reinterpretation of Korean modernity and humor reveals her unique aesthetic sense.

Lee’s humorous aesthetic stems from her extensive work in stage design, exploring the nature of humanity and objects. Her works embody a free and bold aesthetic sense, reflecting Korea’s unique nature-friendly philosophy.

The theme of this exhibition addresses the awareness of societal taboos, norms, and the repression of natural tendencies, focusing on the fragmented nature of contemporary society. Lee’s work aims to heal and integrate these fragments by concentrating on the human senses, particularly the sense of touch. The act of ‘hand stitching’ symbolizes her philosophy of connecting and healing fragmented, severed, and damaged elements, offering a return to childlike dreams.

To learn more, click here.