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Jinie Park
Elizabeth Leach Gallery, Portland, Oregon
Recommendation by Richard Speer

Jinie Park, "One's Hand," 2019, acrylic on sewn fabric pine frame, 39 1/2 x 32 3/4"

Continuing through December 28, 2019

Jinie Park’s mixed-media wall sculptures evoke the stained gestures and blocky shapes of Color Field painting. That her predominant palette of dusty rose, sun-bleached pastels and stone-washed denim evokes the gentle chromatic persuasions of Helen Frankenthaler further positions her within the lineage of second-generation Abstract Expressionists, but with a deconstructivist twist. In the works (all from 2018 and 2019) in this exhibition, entitled “A Pair: Two of the Same,” she deploys acrylic stains atop delicate fabric, often in counterposition to knitted passages, as in “Other Sense,” with its red and pink yarn interwoven with aquamarine blue.  

Strikingly, the artist interrupts swaths of Korean muslin with sheer organza, allowing viewers to see the wooden spacers behind many works, denuding and demystifying the picture plane à la Arte Povera. She incorporates crocheted elements and, in “Platform,” with its expanses of quilted patchwork, a nod to the jo-gaak-bo fabric traditions of her native South Korea. The works are wholly abstract with the exception of “Palm Tree,” a columnar composition crowned by a grid of nine Fiberfil-stuffed squares, which pooch out like miniature bean bags. Without the descriptive title, the piece would present as a straightforward rectilinear abstraction; with it, it’s a whimsical in-joke shared between artist and viewer.

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