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Seo Eun Kim
Artist

Toronto
June 20, 2018

Seo Eun Kim is an artist born in South Korea and raised in Toronto. She has an Honours Bachelor of Arts from the University of Toronto in Visual Arts and Cinema Studies and has exhibited in numerous galleries including a two-person show at Yumart Gallery in Toronto. She has also participated in the Images Festival as a Guest Student Programmer and in the Regent Park Film Festival’s School Programming Advisory Board. As an artist, she focuses on healing, rediscovery, and meaning-making. She is currently producing works for her upcoming solo exhibition in September 2018 and plans to begin her M.A. in Semiotics in 2019. On June 22 she will present her performance video piece Daigona (Candymaker) for the opening night of Forest City Galley's in attendance summer series.

1. Spam



I don’t really know how Spam came to be such a staple in the South Korean diet – most likely from the war. In Korea, Spam doesn’t have the stigma that it has in North America. Sure, everyone knows it’s processed and made from ten different animals’ toenails, but it’s still wholeheartedly loved. A few months ago, my parents filled one of the cabinets with Spam before leaving for a trip. I’m both proud and embarrassed to say I’ve been living off of these ever since. Most Koreans will pan-fry slices of them, but my preference is to spoon them right out of the tin. Cold Spam + hot rice + kimchi = bliss.

2. Ito Junji



After years of reading his mangas, I am now in the process of getting as many of his works tattooed on me as possible. Ito Junji is the reason why I’m still scared of the dark, mirrors, noises, existence, etc. What makes him stand out isn’t just the superfluous grotesques, but his ability to depict twistedness in the everyday. Most of the settings in his stories begin in an average Japanese neighborhood with average people. It’s this amazing mix of the familiar with the disturbingly unfamiliar that makes me re-read them even though I haven’t been able to sleep without the lights off since 2007.

3. Virtual reality



I’ve never been much of a gamer or a techie, but Virtual Reality excites the heck out of me. Its concept is absolutely fascinating. The applications of this technology reach far beyond gaming – or porn. Storytelling, education, therapy, and endlessly more! Personally, I’m particularly interested in how the discourse of cinematic spectatorship and apparatus theory will transform with this new medium. With virtual reality, the debate between “black box” and “white cube” is no longer relevant. How we identify ourselves in relation to the image is thrown into upheaval by VR.

4. Mukbang



Mukbang in Korean roughly translates to “eating broadcast.” So, as the name goes, mukbangs are videos of people eating food – usually in massive amounts. There are various theories about why people enjoy watching these videos. Especially in Korea where beauty/body norms are upheld to damaging levels, mukbangs allow food to be “consumed” without the guilt of actually consuming. However, I think the biggest reason why they exist is for companionship. A lot of people (including me) will watch mukbang while eating to feel like they’re not eating alone. Eating together is such an ingrained form of comfort and mukbang is one of the ways we recreate it.

5. Nahee Lee



Lastly I want to give a shout-out to my best friend. As one of the very few Asian female pilots in Canada, Nahee is the most badass person I know. She never compromises her Korean identity and confronts prejudice with empathy and courage. She is silly, gorgeous, smart, and loyal, and I am honoured to have her in my life. Happy twelfth friendiversary!

 

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