New gallery exhibit featured in FAC

Elisabeth Moore

Using items like thick steel  and thin wires, JinMan Jo created art that weaves together weaker items to create one sculpture.

Students can now view Jo’s combination of brute force and instability on the second floor of the Fine Arts Center. The exhibit, “Identity, Energy, and Communication: JinMan Jo,” was curated by art professor David Marquez, and is housed in the FAC gallery from Jan. 23 through Feb. 24.

JinMan Jo is an assistant professor in the department of art and design at the University of Wisconsin in Stevens Point, Wisconsin. Jo has been featured throughout the United Sates and Korea, including galleries like the Harry Krug Gallery at Pittsburg State University and the Chosun Gallery in Seoul, Korea.

“Since the initial invitation, it took about a year and a half to work out the details and get everything arranged,” Jo said. “The actual setup of the show was relatively simple, thanks to the extremely generous help provided by a number of faculty, despite the fact that we were working over winter break during the holiday season.”

The FAC Gallery regularly rotates exhibits throughout the semester. Each exhibit goes through Kristina Arnold, gallery director and associate professor in the department of art, along with a gallery committee that consists of WKU art professors.

Jo was discovered through exhibit curator Marquez due to both graduating from the University of Iowa Graduate Sculpture Program. According to Marquez, he met Jo in 2000 and had been good friends and collaborators ever since. Due to the International Year of South Korea that was created by the WKU Office of International Programs, the Gallery decided to include Jo in their Korea-based exhibits that will be showcased throughout 2017.

Each exhibit included in the FAC Gallery is completely free and open to the public during the gallery hours, which is Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Along with the regular exhibits, the gallery hosts artist talks, which allows visitors to learn more about the artist and how they created their art. Jo’s artist talk is on February 23, at 5:30 p.m. in FAC 156 with a reception after in the gallery.

“Once the show at WKU is finished, I will be bringing my work back home with me,” Jo said. “Future plans include additional shows. The exhibit is always evolving as I continue to produce more work and make selections from my work to show based on the location or size of the exhibition space.”

After Jo’s exhibit, the gallery has two more exhibits currently planned in conjunction with the Year of South Korea. From March 2 to April 7, “Printstallation Invasion: Eunkang Koh” will be showcasing art created by Eunkang Koh, with an artist talk on April 3 at 5:30 p.m. in FAC 156 with a reception to follow. Also showing from March 2, to April 7, is the exhibit called “Skipping Stones: Three Korean Printmakers, curated by Marilee Salcator, WKU,” which includes work from three different Korean Printmakers.

Currently, the gallery is working on a year-long project with the Year of South Korea, which will allow them to create a total of six exhibitions by the end of this academic school year. These exhibitions will include the works of 37 artists and will showcase work by Korean and Korean-American artists.

“I was honored to be invited to exhibit my work at WKU,” Jo said. “It is a great opportunity as an artist and educator to share my work with the students, faculty and staff. I believe there is great value in sharing my art in an educational setting.” 

Reporter Elisabeth Moore can be reached at 270-745-6288 and [email protected] Follow her on Twitter at @emoore938.