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Kim Byungkwan is an award-winning artist based in Seoul, South Korea, creating these beautifully manic acrylic portraits of various women. Some being iconic Hollywood starlets such as Marilyn Monroe, Audrey Hepburn and Linda Carter as Wonder Woman. Kim’s desire is to bring out the strangeness from familiarity and breaks up and defamiliarize the paintings with scribbles and smears of paint, primarily over their faces.

What I would like to express through my work is very simple. I am trying to bring out strangeness from familiarity (visual habit).
Everything there is out there in this world, more or less, provides familiar vision. This familiar vision can be replaced as habit. This habitual vision which every object gives us and creates comfort. However it shuts down all the other possibilities. The habitual vision or visual habit makes us go by the routine ways. It stops us from having adventure and checking out the wonders out there. My work is trying to destroy, tear up, and reconstruct this habitual vision so that our vision can be expended to other images. I have strong faith in my work that my personal behaviour may lead us “Strangeness within habitual vision off from the track”.
– Kim Byungkwan

JAJ#003 by Kim Byungkwan

CAJ#009 by Kim Byungkwan

JAJ#004 by Kim Byungkwan

X-report_oldstar#04 by Kim Byungkwan

Children #004 by Kim Byungkwan

GhostBackup_OldStar #002 by Kim Byungkwan

GhostBackup_OldStar #005 by Kim Byungkwan

X-report06 by Kim Byungkwan

Ghost Backup #005 by Kim Byungkwan

CAJ#006 by Kim Byungkwan

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  • He’s a good artist, but personally I find what he does to the faces disturbing and psychotic, perhaps that’s the point. Art is subjective etc etc.