June 1, 2024 - June 22, 2024

Ha Haengeun

Willing To Be Motherhood (Gallery IV)

Opening Reception with the Artist(s): Saturday, June 1, 2024 6:00-9:00PM

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Thinkspace Projects presents:

(Gallery IV)

Opening Celebration:
Saturday, June 1 from 6-10pm

Plus be sure to check out the Thinkspace Night Market located in the courtyard between our two spaces featuring live painting, an artist mini-mart, vintage offerings, an open bar, great food, a weed bar, video projections, murals, art installations and more!

On view June 1 – June 22, 2024

Thinkspace Projects is honored to be hosting the debut West Coast solo exhibition for artist Ha Haengeun (b.1985 South Korea). Through the disturbing beauty of her curious humanlike character, Ha expresses her questions about life, art, nature, human(ity), and self.

Artist / Show Statement:
The figures in my paintings contain two events, birth and death, in one. It reveals the paradox of life. And my painting becomes complete when the audience looks at it (I am also the first audience). In one’s life, there is no past before birth and no past after death. Life exists only in the present, between birth and death. In my painting, she is gazing at the present while embracing a moment of the past (birth) and the future (death).

My determination to become a mother resembled my determination to live as an artist. It is about embracing the fragility of life and revealing the fragile inner self of humans to the world. Also, completing a vague image I had while working and revealing it to the world as a concrete piece is similar to giving birth to my children, who are not in this world, but whom I was curious about, taking care of them, and watching them grow.

In my opinion, the job of an artist is to take care of the fragile inner self of humans and reveal it to the world through their own language. In the process of becoming a mother, I often encountered the inner side of the most vulnerable human being. Although I grew up and became an adult, I was still as vulnerable as a child. However, if there is a difference from when I was young, I now have a little more wisdom and courage to actively embrace that vulnerability and express it gently.

The mother’s role expands in my daily life. Little by little, watering flower pots or feeding fish becomes more natural. Talk to cats on the street and say hello to birds and animals I meet while walking. Feeling the wonder of life. I think about the meaning of humans living together, taking care of animals, plants, objects, and spaces.

I thought I was taking care of someone or something, but maybe they were actually taking care of me. Just as my painting can fully exist when someone looks at it. And even though it seemed like I was creating the paintings by moving around, the works was coming out into the world on its own through me.

From the moment I become a mother, I remain a mother until the day I close my eyes. That experience becomes an irreversible truth. The same goes for my days as an artist. From the time I decided to live by creating something, that life has continued. It ain’t over until it’s over. The exhibition title, Willing to be Motherhood, is a metaphor for the attitude toward life that one is willing to actively live the life one creates to the end.

About Ha Haengeun:
Ha Haengeun was born in Jindo, South Korea in 1985. She received her BFA from Hongik University. After her first solo exhibition in Korea in 2010, her work has been shown in exhibitions worldwide, including in Korea (Seoul, Busan, Daegu, etc.), Austria (Millstatt), Germany (Karlsruhe, Cologne, and Frankfurt), France (Paris and Marseille), Netherlands (Amsterdam), Japan (Tokyo and Fukuoka), United Kingdom (London), USA (Hawaii, Los Angeles, Miami and Portland), Singapore, Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Spain (Menorca). Currently, she lives and works in Seoul, South Korea.