GROUP SHOW
TRACES AND THREADS

KÖNIG SEOUL
28 JUNE – 27 JULY 2024

OPENING
28 JUNE 2024 | 4 – 7 PM

KÖNIG SEOUL is pleased to present a group exhibition, TRACES AND THREADS, which brings together over 40 works from 12 female Asian artists, many of whom are showing with the gallery for the first time. While media range from charcoal and acrylic to canvas and paper, the unifying character of the works selected is the breadth and diversity of contemporary forms of drawing. Specifically, as the title of the show suggests, the quality of line within the framework of compositional space is of particular importance.

According to British Social Anthropologist, Tim Ingold, “… lines come in two principal kinds: traces and threads. Traces are formed on surfaces; threads are strung through the air; in their dissolution, traces are converted into threads.” Furthermore, Ingold contends that every line is the trace of a delicate gesture of the hand that holds the brush, and therefore, two senses of drawing emerge that are intimately related – as pulling threads and inscribing with thread – both of which are integral to the theme of the exhibition. Such thinking about the various iterations of linear composition inspired not only the title of this exhibition, but the descriptive language around the various practices by Asian women artists that collect a group of works in which these and other ideas around contemporary drawing are animated. The continued relevance and centrality of tracing and threading takes many forms: the gestural, raw tactility of Ayako Rokkaku’s hand-painting, the deployment of actual thread in Chiharu Shiota’s intricate works on paper, and in Xiyao Wang’s epic tableaux, where charcoal traces the artist’s body as she created her arabesque marks.

Line is therefore both performative and compositional, inviting considerations of the directness of its application, even as its realization in the artworks on display varies immensely. Another quality of lines as both traces and threads are its ability to cut through generational and cultural boundaries, which might otherwise influence the context in which such works are displayed. In Hadieh Shafie’s composition, the hand-written and printed Farsi text is hidden within the folds of elaborate paper spirals. Monica Kim Garza’s audacious female figures emit fast-paced, gestural brushstrokes. With similar traits, Shin Min’s collages and sculptures further showcase unattractive portrayals of young laborers, unveiling the suffering endured by everyday people. Keem Jiyoung’s layered oil-brushstrokes came together as a trace (or connectivity) to the intimate narratives of individual lives with collective resilience under the guise of tragedy.

Threading is both an act of bringing disparate elements together and a means of foregrounding the fragility of connection, as seen in the delicate knitted maps in Movana Chen’s contribution to the show, or the poetic paintings of Rina Banerjee, fusing boundaries between East and West. Banerjee’s work summarizes much in the theme of the exhibition, using line and collaged elements as both additive and analytical modes of construction. Precarity extends into the qualities of touch as well, in the impressions that make up Odonchimeg Davaadorj’s intricate paper works. Odonchimeg's method involves puncturing a hole through the front and back surfaces of the paper, a technique that allows her to connect dots, lines, and surfaces to represent the current plight of younger generations as well as urgent ecological problems. Myung-Joo Kim’s gouaches naturally reveal the formation of her tortured sculptures, where the cruelty of romanticism is especially vivid in the populated faces in her drawing. Wu Jiaru employs a method of automatic drawing in her paintings, a technique that helps her “unlearn” by shutting off the conscious mind and allowing her body to dictate her actions.

Seen together, the richness and diversity of line is matched only by the new and wildly inventive practices that constitute drawing today, works on paper, and all that lies between. The spaces of KÖNIG SEOUL provide a unique environment for works of art such as these, which require careful attention, much like the conditions under which these works were created.

Exhibited artists: Rina Banerjee, Movana Chen, Odonchimeg Davaadorj, Wu Jiaru, Keem Jiyoung, Monica Kim Garza, Myung-Joo Kim, Ayako Rokkaku, Hadieh Shafie, Min Shin, Chiharu Shiota, Xiyao Wang.

EXHIBITED WORKS

Myriad of Voices

Rina Banerjee

Myriad of Voices

Now and then 3

Odonchimeg Davaadorj

Now and then 3

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世美(semi) series_2
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emotional_device_l_i
Engaged

Odonchimeg Davaadorj

Engaged

Grain & grace

Odonchimeg Davaadorj

Grain & grace

Insoutenable légèreté

Odonchimeg Davaadorj

Insoutenable légèreté

L'arbre de la vie

Odonchimeg Davaadorj

L'arbre de la vie

Quatres soeurs

Odonchimeg Davaadorj

Quatres soeurs

Sun Searchers

Odonchimeg Davaadorj

Sun Searchers

Untitled

Ayako Rokkaku

Untitled

Untitled

Ayako Rokkaku

Untitled

Consuming Angels

Rina Banerjee

Consuming Angels

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Drawing for Glowing Hour
White Spike

Hadieh Shafie

White Spike

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Drawing for Glowing Hour
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Drawing for Glowing Hour
Ocean Melody #01

Movana Chen

Ocean Melody #01

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FEATURED ARTISTS

RINA BANERJEE

Rina Banerjee (b. 1963 in Kolkata, India) lives and works in Brooklyn, New York, USA.

Rina Banerjee is a mid-career artist based in New York City. Originally from Kolkata, she creates multi-faceted sculptures, paintings, and drawings, fusing boundaries between East and West. Banerjee’s choice of material and subject matter questions the experiences of femininity, climate change, migration, commerce, and identity in a globalized world. Her sculptures place in conversation cultural objects, textiles, domestic items, mythologies, as well as the material residue of colonialism.

In 2018 Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and the ...
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MOVANA CHEN

Movana Chen (b.1974) is a Hong Kong and Lisbon-based artist who studied at the London College of Fashion and received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology University in Hong Kong. Since 2004 she has been weaving people’s stories through KNITerature - a genre that deconstructs and reconstructs meanings and content through knitting books, maps, and dictionaries. Chen’s multidisciplinary practice is rooted in exploring communication across cultures, often shredding and repurposing dictionaries, maps, and books from different languages to create sculptural installations that represent new forms of language._...
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ODONCHIMEG DAVAADORJ

Odonchimeg Davaadorj (b. 1990 in Mongolia) lives and works in Paris, France.

Odonchimeg Davaadorj left her native Mongolia at the age of 17 and went to the Czech Republic and then France, where she encountered a Western culture that was new to her. This multi-layered identity has certainly influenced her gift of expressing her vision of the world via different artistic media. She draws, paints, and sculpts as well as works with video, performance, dance, poetry, and, more surprisingly, clothes.

Until she left for Europe, Davaadorj built up an unusually close relationship with nature thanks to an almost self-sufficient lifestyle...
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WU JIARU

Wu Jiaru (b. 1992, lives and works in Hong Kong) graduated from Tsinghua University in 2014 with a dual degree in Art and English, and received her master’s degree in Creative Media from City University of Hong Kong in 2017. 

She experiments with installation, ready-made, painting, and generative digital images. Her works explore issues such as identity, boundaries, and the individualization of history from the perspectives of mythology, literature, and intimate relationships.

Her recent exhibitions include solo show Secrets with an Abundance of Foreign Lines, New York, USA (2023) and To the Naiad’s House, Flowers Gallery, Hong K...
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KEEM JIYOUNG

Keem Jiyoung (b. 1987) pays attention to the structural problems located behind social disasters, and the relationship between individuals and society through the protruding aspects of the incidents. After the tragedy of the Sewol ferry, she works on spotting the defects of the current world exposed by coeval disasters.

She received her BFA in painting from Kookmin University and her MFA in Fine Arts from Korea National University of Arts. She has held solo exhibitions at P21 (2022); WESS (2020); Sansumunhwa (2018); O'NewWall E’Juheon (2015) and participated in group exhibitions at various institutions including DOOSAN Gallery (2022)...
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MONICA KIM GARZA

Monica Kim Garza (b. 1988 in New Mexico, US) lives and works in Georgia.

Monica Kim Garza portrays audacious women, living life to the fullest. They lounge, eat, drink, smoke, sunbathe, have sex, and play sports, enjoying mundane activities as they calmly and unabashedly gaze at us. As Kim Garza puts it, everyday moments, memories, and „vibes“ come together in joyful, Epicurean scenes, where the pressures of modern life seem to evaporate. Painted with fast-paced, gestural brushstrokes, the female figures and their surrounding environments blend, heedless of antiquated compositional edicts. The women share distinct bodily and ethical ...
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MYUNG-JOO KIM

Myung-joo Kim (b. 1973 in Daejeon, South Korea) works in Paris and Daejeon.

Her work belongs to the figurative work of the artist in which the world of "fantastic" reigns supreme. Her infinitely poetic but tortured universe recalls the cruelty of romanticism, where all paths lead love to a state of total despair. It conveys the ambiguous feelings of jubilation and disarray that animate every human being.

The artist’s singular expression harmonizes perfectly with the clay material that she shapes, while her meaningful and modest range of colours reminds us that true emotion draws on the profound and unfathomable depths of the he...
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SHIN MIN

Shin Min (b. 1985) lives and works in Korea and received a Bachelor's degree in Mechanical and System Design Engineering from Hongik University (2013).

Min Shin explores the history of violence against the vulnerable, in particular, women. Her works highlight the dominance of the strong over the weak, drawing from her experiences of corporations exploiting part-time workers and instances of oppression against women. Her sculptures give a political edge to her depictions of women labourers in today's world. Showcasing unattractive portrayals of young women, she unveils the suffering endured by ordinary people. Her subjects are often v...
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AYAKO ROKKAKU

Ayako Rokkaku (b. 1982 in Chiba, Japan) lives and works between Berlin, Porto, and Tokyo. Her artistic process involves an instinctive and performative approach, as she uses her bare hands to apply acrylic paint, translating the motion of her body onto the canvas. True to her distinctive technique, she moulds figures with the tips of her fingers, whether on canvas, through glass, or in bronze.

Rokkaku’s visual language seamlessly shifts between elusive abstract formations and figurative elements, drawing inspiration from the kawaii culture (Japanese for cute) and capturing the boundless imagination of a child. Rokkaku is known for he...
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HADIEH SHAFIE

Hadieh Shafie (b. 1969 in Tehran, Iran) currently resides in the United States. Her works consist of hand-constructed intricate designs with low-relief paper sculptures reminiscent of traditional Middle Eastern art. Shafie’s compositions include hand-written and printed Farsi text hidden within the folds of elaborate paper spirals. Both process-oriented and impossibly refined, Shafie’s skillful works are often monumental in scale, overwhelming the viewer with a visual feast of color.

Shafie’s work is in major institutional collections including The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, US; The Victoria and Albert Museum, London, UK; ...
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CHIHARU SHIOTA

Chiharu Shiota (b. 1972 in Osaka, Japan) is currently based in Berlin. Her university career
spans several years: She studied at the Kyoto Seika University in Kyoto (Japan) from 1992 to
1996, was an exchange student at The Australian National University School of Art in Canberra
(Australia) in 1993-93, and a student at Hochschule für Bildende Künste Braunschweig
(Germany) from 1997 to 1999, and lastly at Universität der Künste Berlin (Germany) from 1999 to 2003.


Shiota’s inspiration often emerges from a personal experience or emotion which she
expands into universal human concerns such as life, death, and relationships. ...
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XIYAO WANG

Xiyao Wang (b. 1992 in Chongqing, China) is an artist born in China and educated there, and then subsequently in Germany. She received a BA from Sichuan Fine Arts Institute in 2014, and a BA and MFA from the Hochschule für Bildende Künste Hamburg (2018, 2020). Xiyao Wang is a painter whose sprawling language of abstract form is forged from a dialectic between the outer expressive gestures of her body as she paints, and the resulting marks generated on her canvases. The energy of both domains – the space before the painting and that of the depicted expanse within the frame of the picture – is captured with all of the vibrancy and vigour con...
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