Hostler Burrows and Ago Projects are pleased to announce MyungJin Kim: Hortus Talisman.

In this current body of work, Kim sculpts organically shaped bas-relief clay vessels in warm, earthy terracotta. While the themes in her work are archetypal, the artists filters and distills information from her immediate surroundings and cultural history as poignant subject matter in her art. Her narrative vessels depict a primal botanical landscape inspired by the Jurassic era vegetation in her garden and around Los Angeles. For the exhibition, she has created two of her most monumentally scaled works to date, each standing over six feet tall.

Deeply embedded in Korean culture is the shamanistic practice of strategically placing symbolically meaningful paintings, drawings and special objects in the home or temple as talisman for protection. The gallery installation engages this symbolic practice. Kim has covered the walls with paintings of ancient plants from her garden, enveloping her ceramic sculptures within the space. In using the same visual language as the vessels, Kim's murals transform the architecture of the room, evoking the immersive environment of her own garden.

Kim has long been interested in painting styles from both the East and West. Korean “Minhwa” are mysteriously beautiful Chosun dynasty folk paintings which have been influential in her practice. In particular, 19th century “Whajodo” are symbolic folk paintings that include landscapes with lush flowers and pairs of birds who are “mated for life". They offer the promise of prosperity, longevity and happiness.

Hortus Talisman #2,  2022, Terra Cotta, Terra Sigilata, white underglaze, H74” x W42” x D25”
Using Format