Art Projects International is pleased to present New Works, a group show of new and recent works by Bahar Behbahani, Seokmin Ko, Gwenn Thomas, Soo Im Lee, Filipe Rocha da Silva, and Il Lee. The disparate works by the six artists in New Works are a vital reflection of the rich pluralism of today’s contemporary art world.
Bahar Behbahani’s recent Growing Persian Garden series of drawings began as ritualistic depictions for an extensive series of paintings entitled Persian Garden. Her research-based works of intricate patterns of flowers and plants incorporate information from her culture’s history and archival materials as a way of addressing questions of memory and loss, displacement and longing.
Seokmin Ko’s White Flower is the most recent evolution in his widely acclaimed photographic series, The Square, a multi-year ongoing project of landscapes and cityscapes in which mirrors make more sense as portals to other dimensions similar to ours or radically different.
Gwenn Thomas’ Antonioni’s Window (2017-2018) is an homage and a reconstruction. Inspired by a triangular window within a circular house built for Michelangelo Antonioni on Sardinia in 1969. The work is comprised of painted wood, metal, and Plexiglas. The window is installed over a wall painted pale blue in the shape of itself. It is a part of her ongoing series of sculptural and photographic works informed by architecture, and the light and framework of window forms.
Soo Im Lee’s bold, multi-layered paintings, executed in oil on canvas, employ a variety of brushstroke-like forms in an array of vibrant colors. Lee’s works on paper are rendered in delicate yet bold layers of red, blue and green. The movement of her brush strokes compliment the tonal shifts in color, creating a lively interplay of superimposed layers.
Filipe Rocha da Silva’s latest textile work, Fragments of Textile from Prato (2018), is from his Fragmented Culture series. Created since the artist’s move to Florence, Italy, in 2016, the work is inspired by his new surroundings and represent a new direction of fusing his personal and artistic history into his textile drawings.
Il Lee returns to the reductive palette of his ballpoint works in the new acrylic and oil on canvas works on view. These paintings use a minimum of color and feature strong value contrasts. In WB-1801 (2018), the line is given free rein and consumes the entire surface. Furiously active tangled lines of dark grey have the simple clarity reminiscent of Lee’s pure ink drawings on clean white paper. They become at once drawing and painting.
Bahar Behbahani (b. 1973, Tehran, Iran. Lives and works in Brooklyn, NY) is a recipient of the 2019 Creative Capital Award. She is currently participating in The Drawing Center’s Open Sessions (2018-2020), and her work will be featured in Open Sessions 15 at The Drawing Center in 2019. In 2017, Behbahani’s solo exhibition Let the Garden Eram Flourish was presented at the Hood Museum of Art at Dartmouth College. Behbahani’s work has been featured in numerous international biennales including the 7th Moscow International Biennale of Contemporary Art, Russia (2017); 11th Shanghai Biennale, China (2016); The Prologue Exhibition for the 2016 Honolulu Biennial (2014); 18th Biennale of Sydney, Australia (2012); and Sharjah Biennial 10, UAE (2011). Recent exhibitions include Active Forms, Sharjah Art Foundation, UAE (2018); Garden Coup, Thomas Erben Gallery, NY (2016); and Marking 2, Art Projects International, NY (2016). Her work is represented in major collections including the Hood Museum of Art at Dartmouth College; Sharjah Art Foundation, UAE; and Queensland Museum, Australia.
Seokmin Ko (b. 1984, Gunsan, Korea. Lives and works in South Korea) is a recipient of many prestigious awards including the 2012 SongEun ArtCube Artist award. Ko’s first U.S. solo exhibition The Square was presented in 2012 at Art Projects International, New York. Other solo exhibitions include Seokmin Ko: Strip Show, Art Projects International, NY (2014) and Seokmin Ko: The Square, SongEun ArtCube, Seoul (2012). Recent exhibitions include Blurred Horizons, Art Projects International, NY (2018); Not Your Ordinary Art Storage, SongEun ArtStorage, Seoul (2017); Mirror Mirror, Spacemom Museum of Art, Chongju, Korea (2016), Summer Love, SongEun Art Space, Seoul (2015), and FOTOSEPTIEMBRE USA, San Antonio, TX (2014). His work is represented in major collections including the Fidelity Corporate Art Collection, Boston; Montefiore Collection, New York; and SongEun Art and Cultural Foundation, Seoul. Reviews and feature articles about Seokmin Ko have appeared in major publications including Artnews, CNN Photos, Photo+, and Art in Culture.
Gwenn Thomas (b. Rhode Island. Lives and works in New York) studied at the Sorbonne, Paris, and graduated from the Cooper Union School of Art, New York. Recent museum exhibitions include: Gwenn Thomas: Moments of Place, Point of Contact Gallery at Syracuse University (2014); Number 6: Flaming Creatures, Julia Stoschek Collection, Düsseldorf, Germany (2012-13); Accomplices. The Photographer and the Artist Around 1970, Museum of Modern Art, Warsaw, Poland (2011); Gwenn Thomas/Birgit Hein, I was a male Yvonne De Carlo, Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Castilla y León, Spain (2011). Her work is represented in major collections including The Metropolitan Museum of Art; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; Philadelphia Museum of Art; Harvard Art Museums/Fogg Museum; Graphic Arts Collection, Princeton University Library; Museum Ludwig, Cologne, Germany; Musée National d’Art Moderne, Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; São Schlumberger, Paris; C.A.M. Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian, Lisbon, Portugal; and Julia Stoschek Collection, Düsseldorf, Germany. A survey of Thomas’ work was published by Charta (Milan, Italy) in 2013.
Soo Im Lee (b. 1954, Seoul, Korea. Lives and works in New York) received a B.F.A. and M.F.A. in Painting from Hong-Ik University in Seoul and a M.A. in Printmaking from New York University. Recent exhibitions include: Soo Im Lee: Across Time and Place, Art Projects International (2017); Marking 2, Art Projects International, NY (2016); Open (C)ALL: Up for Debate, BRIC, NY (2016); Coloring Time, Korean Cultural Service NY (2013); Intersecting Lines, Art Projects International, NY (2012); 911 Arts: A Decade Later, Commons Gallery, New York University (2011), Absence, Queens Museum of Art: Partnership Gallery, NY (2010); and Irrelevant, Arario Gallery, NY (2010).
Filipe Rocha da Silva (b. 1954, Portugal. Lives and works in Florence, Italy) has long been fascinated with patterns and draws thousands of tiny figures in rendered expanses. Since 2013, it is his labor-intensive “textile drawings” that depict similar patterns using solely the precise lines of wool thread borrowed from Arraiolos weaving. Recent exhibitions include: Filipe Rocha da Silva, Here to There: Textile Drawings, Art Projects International, NY (2018); Blurred Horizons, Art Projects International, NY (2018); Post Painting, Centro de Artes de Tavira, Portugal (2017); Desenhos Têxteis, Fundação Arpad Szenes Vieira da Silva, Lisbon (2016); and Bl, MUTE, Lisbon (2016). His work is represented in major collections, including the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, Lisbon, Portugal; Centro de Arte Moderna do Funchal, Madeira, Portugal; Centro de Arte Moderna, Museu da Cidade de Lisboa, Lisbon, Portugal; Museu de Arte Contemporânea, Fundação de Serralves, Porto, Portugal; and Museo de Arte Contemporáneo Unión Fenosa, A Coruña, Spain.
Il Lee (b. 1952, Seoul, Korea. Lives and works in New York) is celebrated for his pioneering work with ballpoint pen. His work, with its unorthodox media and distinctive style, has received worldwide recognition. His work has been the subject of numerous major solo exhibitions including his critically-acclaimed mid-career survey at the San Jose Museum of Art in 2007. His work has been exhibited at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, Brooklyn Museum, The Vilcek Foundation, Queens Museum, Crow Museum of Asian Art, Palms Springs Art Museum, Arkansas Arts Center and National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art Korea. His work is represented in major collections including The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Minneapolis Institute of Art, San Jose Museum of Art, Palm Springs Art Museum, Vilcek Foundation, National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art Korea, Leeum Samsung Museum of Art (Seoul) and Société Bic (France).