VERSES FROM THE APOCALYPSE
CINDY JI HYE KIM
6 SEPTEMBER - 13 OCTOBER 2019

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Helena Anrather in collaboration with Foxy Production is pleased to present Verses from the Apocalypse, an exhibition of new work by Cindy Ji Hye Kim. Comprising paintings, sculptures, and drawings across the two galleries, the artist explores our desire for and dependence on structural limits and boundaries in image-making. This is the artist’s second solo exhibition at Helena Anrather.

In an installation of works on paper and a mural at Helena Anrather, Kim transforms the gallery into a psychological landscape exploring the erotic contortions of creative expression. Artistic efforts – pictorial and linguistic – are allegorized as erotic impositions on struggling schoolgirls: one experiences a cool breeze as she reclines with a book over her groin while voyeurs gaze on her through a window, another experiences a metaphor as a collar and chain binding her to a door. In others, inspired by the Korean alphabet, schoolgirls become vowels as they hold contorted poses around wooden and metal scaffolds, which serve as consonants. 

The drawings themselves, like the figures they depict, are locked in place, suspended in the middle of the gallery through a system of steel wire cables spanning the gallery’s walls. The cables connect each drawing to the wall, ceiling, and floor, creating obstacles for viewers as they move through space. Hung at eye level, they are backed with paper Kim made from her own hair, embedding the artist’s presence in the work and gallery. A mural spanning the gallery’s walls depicts medieval Rota Fortunae of schoolgirls cycling through the struggles of the creative process, linking the drawings and their installation into a larger system of creative struggle.

Concurrently at Foxy Production, the artist presents new paintings and wall sculptures. These works, inspired by 16th century depictions of the Tower of Babel, explore the structural limitations of creative representations. Many of the paintings foreground scaffolding and theater sets, literalizing the boundaries that both limit artistic representation and make it possible. Two large paintings are suspended by steel rope in the middle of the gallery, displaying stretcher bars that have been cut into spines, bones, and the ominous figures depicted on the canvases.

Cindy Ji Hye Kim (Incheon, South Korea, 1990) lives and works in New York City. She received her B.F.A. from the Rhode Island School of Design in 2013 and her M.F.A. from the Yale University School of Art in 2016. Solo exhibitions include: "Verses from the Apocalypse," Helena Anrather and Foxy Production, New York, NY (forthcoming); "The Sword Without, The Famine Within," François Ghebaly, Los Angeles, CA (all 2019); "The Celibate Machine," Interstate Projects, Brooklyn, NY; "The Sow is Mine," Cooper Cole, Toronto, ON (both 2018); "Tick," Helena Anrather, New York, NY (2017). Selected group exhibitions include: "Condo Shanghai," Antenna Space, Shanghai, China; "On Pause," Art Gallery of York University, Toronto, ON; "Tetsuo”, Bahamas Biennale, Detroit, MI (all 2019); "Mature Themes," Foxy Production, New York, NY (2018); "Close Quarters," 1969, New York, NY (2017); and "Party’s Over," Topless, Rockaway, NY (2014).

Please contact the galleries for images and further details.

Image: Creativity, 2019, Graphite, charcoal, pastel, and ink on paper with hair paper backing and Plexiglass framing, 12 x 9 inches

Text: Zachary Weinstein