Each individual has multiple "faces" due to the complexity of our social roles. Yet some people, especially public figures, may have more distinct faces due to the nature of their work, and sometimes this can lead to internal psychological conflict and questioning of "Who is the real me?" Yet it is important to embrace these different facets of identity as part of the "real" me. Musical artist Kim Nam-joon (RM) is a wonderful example of how someone can show different aspects of themselves-- being a charismatic, assertive presence on stage with visually striking fashion, while also being a low-key, nature and art-loving individual off stage.
This exhibition portrays BTS leader Kim Nam-joon in different scenarios, showcasing his interests and talents. Divided into three sections-- nature, art, and stage-- visitors will be able to see the portraits of Kim and also engage in artistic activities and art book reading as an act "Namjooning"-- a term coined to refer to visiting museums or nature.
This exhibit was curated specifically with people who don't normally visit art museums in mind. The artist, who created a virtual museum for RM fan art last year (RMgallery.net) was shocked when many visitors expressed that it was their first time going to a museum and realized that art needed to be more accessible. In a time when the Korean art market which is increasingly focusing on art as a means of collection and investment, the artist hopes that people will understand that at its essence, all one needs to appreciate art is love. The artwork featured include both originals and prints, digital and analog, paintings and craft, showcasing diversity of art forms.
The artist: Kiru (Yvette Wohn, Ph.D.) is a Korean mixed media artist and scholar based in the U.S. Like RM, Kiru is a name she uses only in artistic contexts. She has participated in solo and group exhibitions in the U.S. and was featured in a curated collection on Saatchi Art. Her work is characterized by bold colors and usage of Korean and English graffiti. The text in the background of the paintings represents the rhythm of rap in RM’s songs. When not producing art, Dr. Wohn directs the Social Interaction Lab (socialinteractionlab.com) at New Jersey Institute of Technology where she researches identity and social interactions in virtual environments. She has published over 120 research papers and has received millions of dollars in research funding from government and industry.