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Art Watch : Sun You

Sun You is our Art Watch Artist for today. This section is brought to you by Art From Us and Divvya Nirula. The Artists we spotlight here can be from any field, across any discipline, and using a variety of media. We share here why we think they are important and worth watching. Be it genius creators of eras gone by. Or the upcoming contemporary artist who is yet to have their first show. All come under the purview of Art Watch.

Less is more. This is certainly the philosophy that Sun You’s found object sculptures are born out of. This South Korean artist living and working in New York follows in the tradition of Jasper Johns and Rauschenberg. She creating her found-object works. Several critics have called her works delicate, fragile and beautiful. Her works converse about the mundane, the discarded pieces that don’t mean anything to anyone else anymore – come alive under her gaze. She picks them, puts them together and gives them life as works of ‘art’.

Why Sun You?

Chilsun You was born in South Korea. Her ample talent in painting and her engagement with the creative, was evident since childhood. At the young age of 18, she had her first solo exhibition at the then Daegu’s Provisional Gallery. It was not long before she moved to New York, to a more vibrant art culture. Here she pursued higher education at the famous Parsons School of Design. Notably, You was the first female Korean student from the Daegu region to join Parsons in the 1980s. 

During her time in Parsons, she was actively involved with artist movements in Daegu, serving as an adviser for Kyung-Book University.

After her stint in New York she moved on to pursue her career at Seoul. She would then go onto serve as an art director for the Merit Communications. And was on-going member of artist society in Seoul, South Korea. Thereby she brought an open minded sensibility into the art scene at Seoul.

Since 1991, Chilsun You decided to enlightened students with her artwork as a teacher until 2001. 

Currently – ‘Sun’, the shortened version of her name – is serving as a member of OKAA (Orange County Korean Artist Association). Here she continues to create artwork based on floral inspiration.

She is famous for her multi-media wall installations that continue to explore both beauty, fragility along with the theme of decay and creation. Deceptively simple, You’s works are complex assemblages of found materials that are organized meticulously in terms of colour space and shape.


For more Artists handpicked by Divvya Nirula – explore the ART WATCH archive.

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