9 SEP, 2005
Jae Ko is a Korean-born artist educated in Japan and the US. Ko sculpts with ink and paper by unrolling adding machine paper and reshaping it into more alluring forms she binds and soaks in vats of ink, coaxing over months of saturation and letting dry. As the paper takes the ink and as it dries, it elongates and swells into organic sculptural forms guided by Ko’s design. The abstract sculptural works appear soft but are hard to the touch. They are fixed in place with glue and wood panels that serve as wall mounts. Like charcoal on a beach, the surface of the black sculptures has a delicate sheen. Ko says, "The edges of infinitely long pieces of paper create line drawings which spiral, tighten, and loosen depending on how I roll them." In her first solo show in Chicago and the Midwest, Jae Ko will introduce works made with red Korean ink alongside her trademark black pieces. The derivation of these abstract forms was an experiment Ko performed while in graduate school at the Maryland Institute College of Art, when she buried a roll of paper under the beach. Since then, Ko has received honors including a grant from the Pollack-Krasner Foundation in 2000-2001, fellowships with the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities, Virginia Commission for the Arts, and the Maryland Institute College of Art. Ko has had numerous solo and group shows in the US, Japan, and Europe, and her work is represented in the collections of the Corcoran Museum of Art, the Hirshorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, and the Washington DC Covention Center.