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Young, Beautiful and Heartbroken

November 30th, 2010 · 3 Comments

It’s hard to imagine a more beautiful or poignant depiction of emotional duress than these breathtaking paintings by (Korean?) artist Kwon Kyung Yup. Yup’s realist portraits are devoid of typical details: her girls are naked and literally blend into the silent, fleshy abstracted world around them. What Yup excludes she more than makes up for in perfectly nailing the girls’ expressions and body-soul symbolism. (via Booooooom!)


The girls in the paintings disclose this sense of trauma. It is revealed by the pure, snow-white, sterile space… by weeping, bloodshot eyes, by closed or vacant eyes as if seeing through themselves, by staring straight ahead as if accusing someone of something, and by expressionless faces as if not to show her true heart…

It is said that the eye is the window of the soul. The artist uses the eye as an active means to convey emotions. For example, a patch over one eye indicates a sense of loss… Tears are also introduced as an auxiliary device: they not only are a more direct means to deliver emotions but also symbolize the nullification (purification?) of emotion. Kwon gives these condensed tears forming as elaborate crystals a special meaning: they purify, heal, and sublime emotions…

The bandages covering the part of the girls’ faces… hide not the wounds in the body but the those remembered by the body, those stored as a memory in the body, those spiritual and ontological. Like eye patches, bandages protect them from outside stimuli, and cover, embrace, take care of, console, and cure the injuries remembered by the body (the mind sometimes forgets hurts but those remembered by the body are never forgotten). – Kho Chung-Hwan (Art Critic)