Hee Hyoun Chung

Artist Statement


First a title, then a long period of incubation in my mind ensues. Without preparatory sketches, I start a painting with marks to experiment and organize my ideas. The painting undergoes many changes. Towards the end, I simplify the painting by obliterating most of the earlier marks.


With layers upon layers of deliberate and accidental marks, simple and complex compositions, the application and subsequent scraping off of paint, the embedded traces of failed experiments, my work is relevant to the essence of my being and how I live my life—full of chaos and calm, misjudgments and adjustments, exuberance and restraint.


My work used to be representational. But, over time, I felt increasingly constrained and uninspired by realistic subject matter. Then I happened to travel through Death Valley, CA, I was profoundly moved by its desolate, eerie, and majestic expanse. At the same time, I wondered how I could express this otherworldly landscape in a realistic way.


There, I realized my vision as if by an epiphany. My vision was abstraction. Instantly I felt freedom and excitement from the prospect of embarking on a new adventure.


I became a self-taught artist while working full-time as a radiologist. I received some formal art education through weekend classes offered at the Art League in Virginia.


I have received many awards at juried shows, including the Purchase Prize Award from the National Drawing Competition, College of Notre Dame, Baltimore, MD, and the Acrylic Society President’s Cash Award, Cornell Art Museum, Delray Beach, FL.


Since 2006, I have held six solo exhibitions.


My seventh solo exhibition is currently at the Foundry Gallery, Washington DC.




© Hee Hyoun Chung 2017