Eunju Kang was born and raised in Daegu, Korea, and moved to California as a teenager with her family in the 70s. Eunju was always an avid doodler, often filling her textbooks with sketches, which became a helpful communication tool as she adjusted to her new life. Since the early 90s, Eunju has lived and worked in NYC, focusing on painting, printmaking, and transforming her doodles and sketches into a successful business with her sisters.
Eunju earned fine art degrees at UC Santa Barbara and Pasadena ArtCenter College of Design, where she graduated with distinction. She has been awarded residencies at The Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown (FAWC), the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and the Vermont Studio Center. Additionally, she received a scholarship to the Bob Blackburn Print Making Workshop in NYC. Eunju has also taught at the L.A. County High School for the Arts, the ArtCenter College of Design, and the School of Visual Art in NYC. Her fine art is featured in private collections around the world, and her illustration work has been utilized in packaging and ad campaigns by prestigious brands such as Godiva Chocolate, Aveda, Simon & Schuster, among many others.
Eunju's lifelong passion for monoprinting started in Santa Barbara and continues to drive her artistic exploration. She often incorporates collage and detailed sketches or paintings into her work, and she frequently employs mixed media on wood panels. She expresses her love for monoprinting, describing it as an endless journey of surprises—something spontaneous, both intended and unintended.
This exhibition highlights Eunju’s watercolor pieces, unveiling a series crafted lately during the challenging times of COVID. Immerse yourself in the ambiance of Eunju's studio in Jersey City, NJ, where the artist skillfully captures the essence of everyday working life through the delicate interplay of beautiful light and transparent watercolor visuals.
As Eunju ventures into her studio daily, riding her bicycle, she takes the time to observe and appreciate the world around her—the colors, shapes, flowers, and the sky. These images accompany her to the studio, where she manipulates, refines, blurs, and clears, leading to the delightful surprise of a simple gesture, both deliberate and spontaneous. Upon arriving at the studio, she finds solace at her workspace, gazing out of a vast window that frames the ever-changing panorama of the railway and sky. What might initially appear as a static still life in a consistent location unfolds as a dynamic interplay of light and emotion, reflecting the artist's evolving state of mind. This window serves as a portal into Eunju's thoughts and feelings.
Adjacent to this contemplative window, cactus plants stand as silent sentinels, once beloved by Eunju's mother. As an immigrant family, Eunju shares a special bond with her mother and sisters; her mother, in particular, was her core source of strength and inspiration. Some of her studio paintings skillfully weave the threads of her own window with that of her mother's hospital room, creating poignant visual narratives that express the artist’s deep longing for her ailing mother. The resilience and life philosophy of Eunju's mother echo through her art, with each stroke on the canvas infused with gratitude for nature and profound observations drawn from the artist's surroundings. This dedicated time in the studio holds a significant place in Eunju's creative process, serving as both a muse and a catalyst for her inspired and stimulating works.
By viewing these studio window images, the audience can catch a glimpse of the artist's perspective and the sources of inspiration.
"For me, art is an expression of love—an abundance of newness, a blessing, and a gift. After a long absence during the pandemic, I finally returned to my studio in Jersey City and began working with watercolors. Collecting small findings from my neighborhood, I brought them into my creative space, fascinated by the organic shapes and forms they possess.
On my bike ride to the studio, I observe everything around me, and people often gift me with stems or flowers to paint. I lay these natural treasures on paper and strive to depict them honestly, without stressing over exact replication. I delight in discovering how these items connect and respond to each other.
I start drawing them without outlines or pencil, as this process is essential to me—I attend to what is in front of me without the constraints of lines. I let my art happen naturally, allowing things to be as they are. As I draw, the elements seem to engage in conversation with each other—petals fall, and I capture the fallen petals; colors shift, and I record the changes each day.
In my life, accepting changes and the evolution of things often takes time, but with my art, I find it effortless. I observe how blossoms and nature transform, appreciating the beauty in their decay and turn. These watercolors have been my teachers, offering profound lessons, and I am grateful that this learning journey continues."
- Eunju Kang, 2023
To learn more about artist Eunju Kang, please visit www.eujukangarts.com.