Minjung Kim (b. 1962) is a contemporary Korean artist best known for her subtle formal compositions on layered paper. Committed to re-interpreting traditional Korean aesthetics, Kim employs a process-based organization of her thoughts, problems, and whims in each of her artworks. Through the repetitive work of burning and layering mulberry Hanji paper, she conveys the process of emotional healing and meditation. Often colorful and staccato, the artist describes her calligraphic work in emotional terms: “The movement, the colors, they are so calm and peaceful. They are my state of mind,” she says. Born in 1962 in Gwangju, Republic of Korea, Kim was encouraged by her family to pursue her artistic inclination from an early age, studying under famed water colorist Yeongyun Kang. She enrolled at the Hong Ik University in Seoul from 1980 until 1985. Out of her curiosity about the Italian art which led Renaissance, she decided to move to Milan, Italy and later graduated from the Brera Academy of Fine Art in 1991. “Unlike the concept in Korea, there is no distinction between Eastern and Western art. It is more of a matter of differences in materials.” The reason why Kim has chosen mulberry Hanji paper is that it is the best material which she could handle. She began with expressing the musical rhythm through ink, and later went beyond hand-drawing, committing herself to the natural lines created by candle light or incense burn.
After graduating from school, Kim has lived and worked in Italy, presenting her works throughout the world including Italy, Switzerland, China, England, USA, and Israel for over twenty years. She had her solo exhibitions in prominent worldwide galleries and museums, such as Macro - Museo arte contemporanea di Roma, Rome, Italy (2012), OCI Museum of Art, Seoul, Korea (2015), and Hermes Foundation, Singapore (2017). Kim particularly has gained a remarkable attention at the exhibition ‘The Light, The Shade, The Depth’ held in Palazzo Caboto during the Venice Biennale in 2015. She has received numerous honors and high critical acclaim throughout her career, such as her inclusion among important collections like the Fondazione Palazzo Bricherasio in Torino, Italy, and the Museum Sbygningen in Copenhagen, Denmark. In addition, three of her works are currently exhibited as a selected Korean collection at the British Museum. She currently lives and works in between France and the United States.