Kim Joon’s Rockers, pop culture imagery and asian tradition
The Rockers look indeed like fragile porcelain sculptures that could break only by glancing at them. In truth they are digital printings that Kim Joon makes with the use of a digital animation program called 3D Studio Max. The effects are astounding. The rocker series explore themes of memory and youth, where icons of Western popular culture clash with Asian symbolism. “Kim coats the white backgrounds and surfaces of objects with pop-culture imagery. He successfully juxtaposes old and new, traditional Asian motifs and new media.”
Born in Seoul in 1966, Kim Joon still lives and work in hometown.
He first investigated tattoo as a subject matter in the mid-1990s with three-dimensional sculpture before making use of off-beat techniques such as the 3D Studio Max software. “I see skin, or in some cases the monitor, as an extension of a canvas”, says Kim. While still a cultural and legal taboo in Korea, tattoos are for him a way to externalize subconsciousness. They show in broad daylight the hidden desires globally induced in our collective ideologies by materialistic societies. According to Kim, consumerism has turned humans into generic beings of desire; we covet things so much, they almost permeate ourselves.
Having established a growing presence in the international art scene, Kim Joon has exhibited worldwide, from Beijing to Los Angeles. The highly successful Saatchi Gallery’s Korean Eye show confirmed him as one of the most important Korean living artists to date. His work has since then been auctioned at Sotheby’s for almost twice its estimated price and his name was listed in the top ten most-searched Asian contemporary artists on the internet by Art Radar in 2012