Esther Kim

Visual Artist


The mechanical process of repetition is a fundamental component in my sculpture based art practice as it combines the concepts of the working body with the working machine. My process often incorporates the dialogue between my body and mind, allowing me to challenge my bodily limitations and to explore deeper within myself. My explorations of the body take on a tangible and tactile form; I want to materialize my thoughts in order to ground them and to create a sense of permanence. Size and scale creates an emphasis on autonomy as it emulates the living body. The physicality and anatomy of the human body, along with it’s multifaceted associations is the revolving theme of my current works.

I work with mediums that require laborious effort from my body, such as metal, foundry and mould making. Material process is critical to my work as well as attentiveness to both internal and external realities as I am exploring the creation of an embodied thought. Heavy Heart (2018) is a bronze sculpture that resembles fragments of an anatomical heart that has been grafted back together by organic branch formations. While Backbone (2018) is a metal sculpture that stands seven feet tall, abstracting the human spine.

My core concept is to explore the human body as machine, having numerous functioning parts that integrate as a whole. Questioning traditional Cartesian dualism, I believe that the mind is inseparable from the body and is in constant dialogue with one another; the body is full of spontaneity, yet can be obstructed through its own limitations and surpassed by the mind. The mind exceeds beyond what’s physical, infinite through thought and imagination while the body is finite, limited by what’s tangible within reality. Through my work, I aim to create an open interpretation that instigates awareness of the viewers subjective selves and allows people to freely create associations for themselves through their own bodily experiences. I thrive to connect deeper both mentally and physically with others and I believe that this is what my work speaks.