KWON Jaena
(b. 1986, Korea)
Works and lives in New York.
“The idea is to create a static but interactive form that incorporates the viewer’s bodily presence in order to include the viewer and space into the realm of the work.” -Jaena Kwon

Jaena Kwon (b. 1986, Korea) is concerned with the components of painting, its construction, and the expansion of such a medium when engaging with its environmental surroundings. Her approach explores how paintings can implicate a space beyond its surface via an emotional response, creating an interactive body of work.

Kwon demonstrates a keen interest in painted and shaped canvas that stems from discontent with classical techniques. Having played with origami and pop-up books as a child, her artistic medium grew towards these childhood inspirations. When preparing her work, Kwon occasionally flattens a canvas, while other times she transforms a single line drawing into three-dimensional forms. When mounted, the structures appear as part of a wave; one that ebbs and flows from various perspectives. Her works pay homage to the soft curves of the human body, as well as its protruding and amorphous points. They seem to recall something familiar and simultaneously futuristic, offering the viewer a new sense of space and depth.

Jaena Kwon was born in 1986 in Korea. She received her BFA and MFA degrees in Painting from Seoul National University in 2010 and 2012, respectively. In 2014, she continued her studies to obtain an MFA in Painting and Printmaking from the Yale University School of Art. She has held several solo exhibitions in the USA and Seoul, with her most recent taking place at the Thomas Park Gallery in New York. Kwon has an extensive list of group exhibitions around the USA and Korea, where her works have been displayed at respected galleries such as the Brooklyn Expo Center (New York), Bushwick Open Studios (New York), the 808 Gallery (Boston), and the Open Gallery (Seoul).

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