Korean artist Hellen Choo’s jubilant, frenzied and playful canvases developed through many challenges, difficulties and re-evaluations. Educated in England and at the Rhode Island School of Design before returning to Seoul and starting a design firm, her life has been marked by a series of fundamental changes and tumultuous adaptations, each of which informs her practice. In every acrylic and oil stick composition she brings together often-innumerable forms, shades and lines, and lends an organic harmony to these disparate elements.
Choo achieves this subtle balance amongst her many dynamic forms through a process of layering, revisiting canvases over months, covering certain elements while accentuating others. Her approach lends inexhaustible depth to each bright, shimmering painting, hinting at the struggles that gave birth to such joyous outbursts in a manner that evokes the raw emotions of Jean-Michel Basquiat’s work. Under the guise of similarly child-like or primitive scrawling, Choo gives beautiful expression to our capacity for self-renewal. From every hardship comes immensely profound emotional growth.