PARK Yoonyoung
Born in Seoul, S. Korea
Lives and works in Seoul and New York
Pictogram Paintings  

Park Yoonyoung's rebellion against traditional Korean painting is that of a gentle post-modern iconoclast. Driven less by a desire to defy traditional aesthetic values than by the need to find and define her own vocabulary, Yoonyoung reconstitutes traditional doctrine in a subjective language she uses for personal narratives. Yoonyoung's paintings combine elements of iconic and pictorial representation, often substituting the calligraphic inscriptions that accompany traditional paintings with her own story-telling pictograms.

The pictogram painting, One Person of Importance and Two of Unimportance depicts three seemingly interlocked figures sitting at a table. The highly schematic visual style with its silhouetted images alludes to street signage. Yoonyoung utilizes Oriental Painting's non-conformity to single-point perspective in order to illustrate the power relationships between the figures, inverting perspective and playing with their relative sizes.

The image of the table, invoking as it does the communal gathering place where social hierarchies are enforced, speaks intimately to any Korean. Yoonyoung's employment of traditional calligraphic black ink and rice paper, as well as the iconic - "conventional" - style of the image, clearly and powerfully connote its social meaning.


>>> critic's review (footnote #12)