Ilhwa Kim's work 'Seed Universe' is composed of tens of thousands of seed units. Each seed unit has the combination of straight lines and circles, which compose a tiny single universe. The materials are created personally for the each single universe. Kim dyes each sheet of paper by hand with thousands of different colours and cuts and rolls the layers of paper to make it rigid. It gives her an emotional bonding to each single universe. Not a single universe has the same shape, look or colour in her work.
When tens of thousands of universes take the shape of the whole universe, it never stays still and keeps turning into another version, as if the universe rolls slowly from one second to the next. The tactile universe pushes away the distinction between sculpture and painting; tenderly relaxed talk goes on ceaselessly between the sculptural weight and tactile painting quality.
The universe transforms dramatically from afar to close up. The sense of completion never comes in full and each perception betrays previous ones a moment ago. Kim's universes are extremely free from optimum point of view. If you take a look at the work closely, lots of seeds are lodged tightly engaged in the surface. The delicate surface whirlpool reminds that seeds are pushing and pulling themselves to sprout. However, the moment you watch it from a distance, the work becomes full of seed-waves lashed out from the boundary.
Tiny seed units by Kim's hands are firm and rigid, but the lump by the seed waves moves tenderly and fast. The surface and sense of the work keeps changing from morning to night, all day long. The 'Seed' work itself does not move, but reforms every moment achieving unseen dynamic balances among calm humble seeds.
Amongst her solo exhibitions you will find “Korean Contemporary Art: The Present and Future” in the Kowoon Art Museum, Seoul, “Golden Eyes” in Coex, Seoul, "Seed Universe 天下圖," in Dennos Museum, USA, "Seeds of the Universe" and "Sensory Portrait" in the House of Fine Art Gallery. Her most recent exhibitions include "Beyond Visibility" in Gallery Hue, Singapore and "Seed System" in HOFA Gallery, London.