Painter, graphic designer, and illustrator Erin Hyunhee Kang is driven by observed spaces of diaspora as metaphors for her life and identity. Kang moved to the United States at the age of 15 and felt a duality and clash between Eastern and Western values. Her work aims to create a kind of middle ground and a further exploration of her identity not only as a Korean American but also as a female, a mother, and a wife. Kang’s practice explores the subconscious often resulting in surreal, fragmented landscapes that are simultaneously serene and chaotic. She incorporates elements of the natural world, figures, and architecture to build new sites of belonging, resistance, and healing.
Kang’s latest body of work focuses on destruction, repair, and resilience in the wake of the Marshall Fire. The artist experienced a concurrent sense of emotions ranging from destruction and revival, hope and despair, to survival and guilt after her home was severely damaged during the 2021 fire. Kang began to reflect on her home as a site of in-betweenness where healing, reconciliation, and forgiveness could take place in the midst of anger, sorrow, and loss. This exhibition continues to explore home and place as sites steeped in conflicting emotions. Kang presents a series of digital collaged images sourced from photo documentation of destroyed and preserved areas after the fire, which she places in fragmented landscapes that are simultaneously serene and chaotic.
About the Artist
Erin Hyunhee Kang is a painter, graphic designer, and illustrator based in Boulder. Born in Seoul, Korea, Kang moved to the United States when she was fifteen. She earned her BFA from Rhode Island School of Design, where she was selected for study abroad programs in Rome and Seoul.
Kang worked for The New Yorker at Condé Nast as a photograph assistant and for the visual effects team at Tapehouse Toons. For many years, she was a book jacket designer at Penguin Group USA.
In Boulder, Kang has been a high school visual arts teacher at Boulder Valley School District and a member of the Boulder Creative Collective. Her freelance clients include Penguin Random House, Denver Art Museum, and Denver Theater District and Public Arts. She is currently pursuing her Master of Fine Arts Practice at University of Colorado Boulder. Kang has recently exhibited her work at Artworks Loveland, AKA Gallery, and Dairy Arts Center.