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So Youn Lee
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 So Youn Lee(B.1984) is a contemporary visual artist who graduated from the Pasadena Art Center College of Design and is based in Los Angeles, California. The artist's work revolves around observing and understanding the non-corporeal aspects of human beings. She discusses a wide range of themes and subjects surrounding our lives, ranging from the joy of existence to the pain of loss through a virtual world that has a light and comforting atmosphere.


The artist expresses the unconscious and instinctive resistance to human finitude through her works. Within her creations, a reimagined world unfolds that transcends three-dimensional constraints and fixed notions, inhabited by the gender-neutral protagonist Mango and its French Bulldog companion, Choco. Mango journeys through a warm pastel-hued galaxy, rainbow bubbles, and the space between eyes and stars. The soft and glowing pastel colors in her work are made by the artist's unique technique, in which she delicately layers oil paint with brushes on a canvas with multiple layers of acrylic paint and various textures, adding transparency and depth to her work.


Inspired by the portrayal of virtual realms in comics and animation, the artist's work extends the boundaries of expression through alternative universes. Lee's artistic endeavors are influenced by the ethos of Dansaekwha groups, which emphasize dedication, discipline, and self-reflection through creative activities. To Lee, her artworks are viewed as spiritual objects where the essence of her ideas and beliefs are manifested in a three-dimensional realm.


The artist discusses the relationship between community and an individual and the conflicts and transcendence of modern life through the alternative universe portrayed in her work and calls it

'a benign world of possibilities - a safe place where ambiguity, gentle chaos, and freedom coexists.' In her works, unconscious and disorderly elements exist chaotically without any orders or connections, yet they coexist peacefully in harmony with each other simultaneously.


The idea of foreignness, fear of isolation, and loneliness is drawn from her experience when she left Korea and found herself in a new environment in the U.S. She derives an inspiration that "all humans are strangers" and embeds an attitude of self-acceptance in her work where she sees both the ordinary and challenging aspects of life as adventures worth exploring.


The artist asserts that art portrays different lives from various perspectives. Believing that there is no simple or easy life, her works visually reinterpret and reconstruct the struggles, pain, and inevitable loneliness of existence in the virtual world she created. The artist constantly seeks to pursue and convey the fullness and transcendence of life with her creativity and inspiration.




 이소연은 파사데나 아트 센터 칼리지 오브 디자인을 졸업하였으며 현재 미국 로스앤젤레스를 기반으로 활동하는 현대 미술작가이다. 작가는 인간의 비육신적인 요소를 관찰하고 이해하는 것에 흥미를 느끼고 생의 희열부터 상실의 아픔까지 다양한 삶의 주제들을 가볍고 편안함이 느껴지는 가상의 세계를 통하여 전달한다.


작가는 인간의 유한함에 대한 무의식적이고 본능적인 저항을 작품을 통해 표현한다. 작품 속에 재구성된 세계는 3차원적인 제한과 고정관념을 넘어선 곳으로 무성의 주인공 망고 Mango가 등장한다. 망고는 프렌치 불독 동료인 초코 Choco와 따듯한 파스텔 컬러의 은하, 무지개색의 거품, 눈동자와 별들 사이를 여행한다. 부드럽게 빛나는 파스텔 색상의 작품들은 여러겹의 아크릴 페인트와 다양한 질감으로 미리 준비된 캔버스 위에 오일 페인트를 붓으로 섬세하게 중첩하여 투명감과 깊이를 동시에 표현하는 방식으로 완성된다.


만화와 애니메이션에서 가상의 세상을 통한 표현력의 확장에 영감을 받았으며 작품 활동을 통한 정진과 수양, 자아성찰의 태도를 말하는 단색화그룹의 태도에 영향을 받기도 하였다. 창작 활동의 결과로서 존재하게 되는 작품을 3차원의 세상에 작가의 정신이 모습을 드러낸 영적인 오브제로 보기도 한다.


작가는 작품속의 대안 우주를 통해 공동체와 개인의 관계, 현대인의 갈등과 초월을 이야기하며 이 곳을 “상냥한 가능성의 우주-모호함, 온화한 혼돈, 자유가 공존하는 어딘가 안전한 곳"이라 말한다. 작품 속에서는 무질서하고 무의식적인 요소들이 인과관계 없이 존재하지만 서로 어우러져 평화롭게 공존한다. 작가 자신이 한국을 떠나 미국이라는 새로운 환경에 놓여 졌을 때 느꼈던 이질감, 분리의 공포, 외로움의 경험에서 ‘인간은 모두 이방인’이라는 영감을 받았으며 삶의 평범함과 도전 모두를 탐험할 가치 있는 모험으로 여기는 자기 수용의 태도를 작품에 담아내고자 한다.


작가는 예술은 다양한 삶을 각기 다른 시각으로 담아내는 것이라고 말한다. ‘세상에 단순하거나 쉬운 삶은 없다’는 시각으로 생을 위한 인간의 지난한 투쟁과 고통, 피할 길 없는 존재의 외로움을 가상의 세상에서 시각적으로 재구성하고 재해석하는 것으로 삶 속의 충만과 초월을 추구하고 표현한다.





2020        ‘November Feast’ Christie’s



2023        Solace, Gallery STAN, Seoul

                In Limbo, Gallery Ascend, Hong Kong

2022        Over the Moon, Hashimoto Contemporary, NY

2021        Origin, Gallery STAN, Seoul

2019        Parallel World, Gallery STAN, Seoul

2018        Spectruma, Arsham Fieg Gallery, New York, NY

2017        Aurora Punch, Gallery STAN, Seoul

                Limpid, Thinkspace Gallery, Culver City, CA 

2016        Hello, New World!, Secret Fresh Gallery, Manila



2023        KIAF Plus, COEX, Seoul

                CAN Art Fair Ibiza, Ibiza

                Art Busan, BEXCO, Busan

2022        Art Miami Fair, Miami

                KIAF Plus, SETEC, Seoul

                Art Busan, BEXCO, Busan    

2021        KIAF, COEX, Seoul

                Who’s Next?, The Warehouse Gallery, Hong Kong

                Art Busan, BEXCO, Busan

2020        Urban Break, COEX, Seoul

                Art Busan, BEXCO, Busan

                Group show, Hashimoto Contemporary, NYC

                House of the Rising Light, Dorothy Circus, London and Rome       

​2019        Art Central Hong Kong, Over the Influence Gallery, Hong Kong

                Supersonic Invitational, Spoke Art, San Francisco, CA

                Art Busan, BEXCO, Busan

                Moleskine Project, Spoke Art, San Francisco, CA

                KIAF, COEX, Seoul

                KIAF, Over the Influence, Seoul

                The Paintguide Show, Thinkspace Gallery, Culver City, CA

                Universe #2 Group Show, the Garage Amsterdam, Amsterdam, Netherland

​2018        7th Annual Supersonic Invitational, Spoke Art, New York, NY

                Art Fair Tokyo, Lucie Chang Fine Art, Tokyo, Japan

                Art Central, Lucie Chang Fine Art, Hong Kong, Hong Kong

                LAX/PDX Part II, Antler Gallery, Portland, OR

                Suggestivism, Spoke Art, New York, NY

                Complex Con, Gallery STAN, Long Beach, CA

​2017        6th Annual Supersonic Invitational, NYC, NY

                Art Busan, BEXCO, Busan

                Sweet n Low: International Show of Cute, Bedford Gallery, Bedford, CA

                DTA Dunny x Manila, Secret Fresh Gallery, Manila, Philippines

​2016        5th Annual Supersonic Invitational, Spoke/Hashimoto Contemporary, San Francisco, CA

                Moleskine Project V, Spoke Art, San Francisco, CA

                Colors 4 Person Show, FIFTY FIFTY, Seoul, Korea

                No-Commission Bronx, The Dean Collection, Bronx, NY

                Suggestivism, Spoke Art, San Francisco, CA

​2015        Thinkspace 10th-anniversary show, Thinkspace Gallery, Culver city, CA

                DTA Dunny Exhibition, Clutter Gallery, Beacon, NY

                Pow! Wow! Hawaii, Thinkspace Gallery, Hawaii

                Pastel Quest, Screaming Sky Gallery, Portland, OR

                Dreamland, Corey Helford Gallery, Culver City, CA

                Moleskine Project IV, Hashimoto Contemporary, San Francisco, CA

                Cuba Stake Board, Art Whino Gallery, Oxen Hills, MD

                EDC Live Painting, Just Kids Official, Las Vegas, NV

                Dream Talk 4 Person Show, La Luz De Jesus, Los Angeles, CA

                Art Collector Starter Kit, Corey Helford Gallery, Culver City, CA

                LAX / LHR, Stolen Space Gallery, London, UK

                No Commission Art Fair, The Dean Collection, Miami, FL

                Scope Miami Basel, Thinkspace Gallery, Miami, FL

2014        Convergence, Copro Gallery, Culver City, CA

                LAX/TXL, Thinkspace Gallery, Schoenberg, Berlin

                Art Collector Starter Kit, Corey Helford Gallery, Culver City, CA

                Giant Among Us, Corey Helford Gallery, Culver City, CA

​2013        Animal Kingdom, Gallery Nucleus, Alhambra, CA

                Not in Kansas Anymore, Gallery Nucleus, Alhambra, CA

                Moleskin Show III, Spoke Art, San Francisco, CA

                Out of Shire, Gallery Nucleus, Alhambra, CA

​2012        Veneris 13, Skotia Gallery, Culver City, CA

                Look at This Look at That! Gallery Nucleus, Alhambra, CA

                Veneris 13, Skotia Gallery, Culver City, CA

                Moleskin Project II, Spoke Art, San Francisco, CA



2020        Lancôme ‘Genifigue’

2018        ALDO ‘MX3 Artist Series’

2016        Subway Singapore ‘Say it with Sub’

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