A graduate of Rhode Island School of Design and of The City University of New York, this Korean artist has developed a strong reputation on her own, and also works collaboratively with her fellow Korean artist, Sasa.  In her own work, MeeNa uses the Pantone color scale to analyze and characterize the fundamental colors and geometries of specific man-made environments. Her works were exhibited not only in her native Korea, but also in the US, New Zealand, Australia and China. Her eclectic, multi-media collaborations with Sasa, which have gained wide recognition in Southeast Asia and beyond, were recently shown at the prominent Kukje Gallery in Seoul.  In contrast with her own work, the collaborative work focuses on excessive consumerism in domains ranging from fashion and food to art itself.
MeeNa described her stay at the JCVA in February of 2004 as extremely fruitful and enriching.  She applied her unique color analysis method to four man-made monuments in the four quarters of Jerusalem’s Old City.  The analysis of the color composition (which uses the Pantone color scale) is presented along with the Old City’s contour line. The prints seem to question whether the four quarters are as different as the different religions and histories they represent would suggest.  During their stay, MeeNa and Sasa’s collaborative work raised serious interest in the Israeli art community: the Israeli Center for Digital Art, Holon, invited them to exhibit their installation How Much is Enough in the show Hilchot Shchenim chapter B (Neighbors’ Ways chapter B), in the summer of 2004. The artists used regional “all natural” food products for the Holon exhibition, thus giving the work local flavor (so to speak) and immediacy.

This collaborative, site-specific installation, shown initially in Seoul’s Samsung Museum of Modern Art in 2003, included an in-gallery vitrine of actual food products, a wall of disturbing, sometimes famous quotes about art, all beginning with the phrase “Art is…” and an exit wall with the phrase “I’m always joking. It’s a defense mechanism,” taken from woody Allen’s Sleeper

The food products, which MeeNa and Sasa were selling to viewers by credit card after obtaining the relevant permits for conducting such commerce, were displayed under the phrase “ONEHUNDREDPERCENTONLY.”  A monitor hung on another wall showed a looping image of identical shoes in different colors rotating on a rail.

The installation interrogates the relation between the endless desire of consumerism and the kind of desire produced by artworks.  Are buyers of the food products buying food to be consumed, or art to be preserved?  Perhaps the two are not as different as we may think. The food purports to be a hundred percent “natural,” or “pure.” And the art? The surplus of consumer products is echoed by a surplus of art definitions, made near meaningless by their mechanical, alphabetized serialization: an arbitrary, hence empty, plenitude.  This art also imitates the consumer products it studies by stripping itself entirely of the artists’ personal emotions, crafts, or presence. All of its materials – from video advertisements to street signs to other artists’ comments – are depersonalized. The artists’ borrowed exit line emphasizes the complicity they attest to: their critique of consumer society and of its evasion of personal responsibility is part and parcel of this selfsame society.