Ronchini opens the very first solo exhibition of Korean American painter Julia Jo

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Ronchini opens the very first solo exhibition of Korean American painter Julia Jo
Installation view.

LONDON.- Ronchini is presenting the very first solo exhibition of Korean American painter Julia Jo. The works of the show, as its name indicates, were created and articulated by the artist as different parts of one single tale. Working mostly with oil on canvas, Julia Jo’s idiosyncratic style incorporates a vivid palette rich with colours which, allied with both precise and heavy brushstrokes allow her to oscillate back and forth between the figurative and the abstract.

The tale that is being told throughout the exhibition is about relationships. Intimate in nature, it is inspired by everyday social interactions, personal experiences, dramatic outcomes, and emotional responses led by miscommunications. Therefore realistic, although represented through a heavily idealised and dramatised visual lens, the tale being told does not have the ambition of being Jo’s own story. It is rather free, without an owner, waiting to be claimed.

Jo’s dramatic taste comes from a strong inspiration in Baroque art, while Abstract Expressionism links her unique use of form and colour. Her works, proudly displaying the colours of female artists such as Joan Mitchell, Cecily Brown, or even Artemisia Gentileschi, shows every quality of the monomyth.

This series marks the continuation of what she began at Parsons School of Design. Compelling to all the senses, Jo feeds her creative energy with music and novels, and uses them to tackle emotional responses in unison with her painted works. Unrequited love, butterflies in the stomach, regretful vulnerability, unfound obsessions, bitter betrayal, and longing for something yet to come, all of these are being unravelled and experienced.

Although the paintings both display and provoke emotional responses, and despite the dramatic, organic sweeps across the canvas, she paints in a controlled manner. This allows her to weave her story and give it all the qualities of the hero’s journey, as well as the antihero’s, and many more.

For Tall Tales, Jo empowers the principles of contingency. She leaves us understanding what would happen if one’s memory, made of emotional experiences, would be confronted and merged with someone else’s, or a multitude of different emotional perspectives. She wants us to understand that when two people or more experience the same event, their accounts will vary greatly and that one’s point of view may just be a tall tale to the next.

Julia Jo (b. 1991) is a graduate of The Smith College of Northampton, Massachusetts and holds a Master of Fine Arts from New York’s Parsons School of Design. Jo’s practice simulates feelings, emotions, and memories by giving them form. Based in Brooklyn and of South Korean descent, Jo is having her first solo exhibition at Ronchini, which is also the first time she is being exhibited in Europe.

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