Ironic Mythologies: Dorothy Yoon, HaYoung Kim & Hyojin Park

Ironic Mythologies: Dorothy Yoon, HaYoung Kim & Hyojin Park

kpop venus - solar gold (m2) by hyojin park

Hyojin Park

Kpop Venus - Solar Gold (M2), 2012

kpop venus - solar gold (m1) by hyojin park

Hyojin Park

Kpop Venus - Solar Gold (M1), 2012

kpop venus – fuschia by hyojin park

Hyojin Park

Kpop Venus – Fuschia, 2012

8 of heroines by dorothy m. yoon

Dorothy M. Yoon

8 of Heroines, 2009

Thursday, November 8, 2012Saturday, December 1, 2012

Hong Kong, China

Amelia Johnson Contemporary is delighted to announce, Ironic Mythologies. Featuring three of Korea’s most active young artists - Dorothy M Yoon, Hayoung Kim and Hyojin Park, the works have been carefully selected by London and Seoul based, independent curator and art consultant Heejin No Skipwith of Bright Treasure Ltd.

Ironic Mythologies presents three visual languages created by these talented female artists to convey their beliefs, fantasies and challenges in order to draw attention to and even question several social taboos. Initially, their works overwhelm with their vibrant and contrasting colours and techniques. These provocative photographs, stainless steel forms protruding from the wall and effervescent acrylics on drafting films and polyester are united by the artists’ shared experiences and struggles to find their own independent identities following their departures from a society preoccupied with perfection and the preservation of traditional gender roles. Yoon, Park and Kim are all Korean-born graduates of two of the most prestigious arts colleges in London, U.K. While the artists come from different social and economic backgrounds, the complexity of their works gives an insight into the difficult choices they have faced in order to overcome traditional Korean perspectives and succeed as female artists internationally. The title of the exhibition not only describes their individual techniques and concepts but also serves as a comment on their personal stories. Through intense reflection and careful training, each artist has developed their own visual language as a means to communicate, as well as bridge, the cultural and psychological gaps between Eastern and Western Idealism.

Yoon explores her fantasies by adopting various guises. In her ‘8 of Heroines’ series, the artist juxtaposes eight of the Grimm Brothers’ most beloved heroines, with blond hair and oriental features similar to Yoon’s own, against fantastical, Asian-inspired landscapes recreating her childhood fantasies and posing thought-provoking questions about societal expectations of beauty and the pressures that cultural trends place on females today.

Kim’s use of unconventional mediums is innovative and perceptive. Her multi-layered paintings are created using transparent films and opaque polyester fabric. These plastic-like surfaces compliment her cartoon-style imagery. In the multi-layered films, her painting represents elapsed time, perspective, and various actions that are then combined into one harmonious work. In her ‘Eat All You Can’ series, Kim shows us a very vivid picture of how people in our contemporary society consume too much information; in the form of advertisements, iconic images and emoticons from various media, and lack the power to filter and select.

Park’s abstract forms of sculptural figures with painted eyeballs, innocent objects and bright images comprise her ‘Kpop Venus’ series, which has been derived from her 2010 ‘My Eyes Beheld the Glory’ series. Rather erotic and organic forms represent traditional notions of women’s physical and social obligations contrasted and provoked with colourful painterly patterns of naïve and childish objects. The eyeballs represent gazes of prejudice, jealousy, happiness and other emotions that women imagine or experience. Park’s version of Venus is a statement on the new millennium female’s social and notional designations. Historical Venuses have related contemporaneous thinking on female roles and have been manifested through different legendary and womanly figures including Venus of Willendorf and Venus of Milo in the West and statues of Buddhist Bodhisattvas in the East.


Dorothy Yoon was born in 1976 in Busan, Korea. She completed her BFA and MFA at Ewha Women’s University in Seoul Korea in 2001 before completing her second MFA at Goldsmiths College, University of London, UK. Before graduating from Goldsmiths College in 2007, Yoon was an active player in the contemporary art scene both in Korea and internationally. While attending her traditional fine art course in Korea at a time when the art market was not well conceptualized or understood, her work challenged the conventional idealism surrounding fine art. Since 2000, she has produced numerous video projects examining the desires, fantasies and tales that remain at the centre of her life and work. This mixture of fantasy (she wanted to be a blonde woman as a child) and reality (she will never be naturally blond) is instantly revealed with little explanation on the surface. Rather the hybrid of symbolism and metaphors of oriental and occidental traditions and perceptions of beauty are questioned and analysed behind these superficial glossy scenes.

HaYoung Kim was born in Seoul, South Korea in 1983. She received her BFA Painting from Hong-ik University, Seoul in 2007 and completed her MFA at the Royal Academy in London, UK in 2011. Kim describes her work as looking at humans with a curious gaze, as if through an endoscope. The artist is interested in the mind and body and a being's endless desire for perfection - DNA, designer babies, superhumanity, posthumanism, the primordial soup, and the animality and vegetability of outside and in. HaYoung Kim’s work has been exhibited in the UK, Korea, China. Japan, France and Scotland and won major prizes including the Jerwood’s Prize for painting in 2010 and The Dunoyer de Segonzac award in 2011. She also completed residencies in New York and Scotland.

Hyojin Park, born in 1974 in Andong and grew up in Konju, Souh Korera, recently received her MFA from Goldsmiths College, University of London. Her work explores the freedom of artistic choice against the backdrop of the societal pressures a young female faces in modern-day Korea. After completing her fine art education in Seoul at Ewha Women’s University (BFA and MFA) in 2002, Park married and had three children before her family allowed her to go to London to pursue a second Masters degree at Goldsmith’s in 2010. At first glance, Park’s brightly coloured sculptures appear to be covered in kitsch, Manga-esque forms such as cherries, toys and eyeballs. The main shape of the sculptural body is a form representing her desire to be free from familial and social obligations as well as from the prejudices surrounding women’s physical sacrifices including pregnancy and childrearing. The eyeballs and other objects represent social, personal and the other ‘gazes’ that we are subjected to on a daily basis. Park’s works are the ultimate exercise in being provocative but remaining naïve at the same time.


Founded in 2005 by Amelia Johnson, Amelia Johnson Contemporary has built up an enviable reputation for presenting carefully curated exhibitions. The gallery is dedicated to exhibiting groundbreaking international contemporary art in Hong Kong and to promoting young Hong Kong artists through spotlight exhibitions both in Hong Kong and overseas. The gallery has participated in many international art fairs, including CIGE (Beijing), Arco (Madrid), ShContemporary (Shanghai), The Asian Art Fair (New York) Pulse (Miami) and ART HK (Hong Kong).


Founded in 2006 by Heejin No Skipwith, BTAP is an art consulting company based in London and Seoul. It has served master piece research and collection management for high profiles collectors since its establishment. BTAP also has dedicated its resources to supporting and promoting emerging artists and new trends through collaborations internationally. Ms Skipwith has been an active contributor to art magazines and newspapers and acts as a Project Director of ‘Korean Art: Power of Now’ jointly published by TransGlobe and Thames & Hudson in 2013.

For further details on the exhibition, detailed artist biography & images please contact the gallery on (852) 2548 2286 or