ARTIST STATEMENT

Artist Statement
Through my interdisciplinary practice incorporating live performance, multi-media visuals, costume, sound and participatory art, I reflect my cross-cultural identity as a Korean living in New York. Even as I travel globally, my identity is hybrid, never fixed. I adopted the surname “Jellyfish,” because I come from a mixed family of many names, often feeling as an outsider and a misfit. I find freedom in the symbol of a deep sea creature that roams about, fluidly, transient, its very form made from the same water in which it lives.
In my work I deal with issues of belonging, disorder, confusion, loneliness and frustration. The various forms my practice takes offer inclusive, interactive artwork that is colorful, blurring the boundaries between art and ordinary life. I thrive in the realm of experimental, socially engaging, and environmentally conscious acts of creation.
I actively incorporate a punk philosophy, d-i-y ethic, and LGBTQ dance culture and politics into my work. Although I am not classically trained, my effort, innovative approach and creativity shine through in my work. My grandmother named me Greem, which means “picture” in Korean. She wasn’t able to draw, but did so nonetheless. Everyday she saw a small improvement in the quality of her artwork. I feel very much the same way in relationship to my experimental art and music practice.
As I work, I often question the nature of reality, chaos, utopia, dream space and existence itself. I feel this process is related to my Korean heritage, and forms of indigenous Korean shamanism which view anger as a type of fuel for spiritual and ritual experience as healing. When I perform, I invoke these supernatural energies in my work, providing a cathartic experience for both myself and the audience at hand.

My recent work, Cosmic Cavers, is a site-specific immersive installation occurring in multiple iterations. A Cosmic Cave can be built anywhere, and Cosmic Cavers are those who encounter the space. Cosmic Caves are built out of simple materials, something as basic as chicken wire covered in soft fabric. I also make cotton masks inspired by forms found in nature for each participant to put on upon entering the cave. The work is about dynamic interactions and trivial encounters. Ordinary meets extraordinary, and simple gestures are displaced into a bizarre and otherworldly context. During the night Cosmic Cavers open unto chaos and extremes, they embrace destruction, violence, anger and madness. When the sun comes up, they are blessed with ordinary boredom. Ultimately, Cosmic Cavers offers a timeless dream space, a malleable emotional outward bound, each viewer creates their own experience.