Young Joon Kwak (b. 1984 in Queens, NY) is a Los Angeles-based multidisciplinary artist who primarily uses sculpture, performance, video, and community-based collaborations to reimagine bodies and the power structures that govern our everyday lives as mutable and permeable sites of agency. In their sculptures and performances, Kwak takes a fluid and hybrid approach to rethinking the form, functionality, and materiality of objects as a means of resisting the harmful ways in which marginalized bodies have been historically objectified. Kwak readily wields and recontextualizes materials and references from the ruins of consumer culture, politics, and art history, breaking free from known identities and expanding our imagination of new and continually evolving bodies, selves, and futures.
Kwak founded Mutant Salon, a roving beauty salon/platform for experimental performance collaborations, and is the lead performer in the electronic-dance-noise band Xina Xurner. They have performed and exhibited at the Hammer Museum; The Broad; REDCAT; ONE National LGBT Archives; Commonwealth & Council, Los Angeles, CA; Museum of Contemporary Art, Denver, CO; and Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, IL, among others.
Read this interview to learn more about Kwak’s sculpture work.
Zoom link to attend: https://otis.zoom.us/j/4866446744
Young Joon Kwak’s website.
Image: G.L.O.W. (Gaze Living Other Worlds) (Silicone, nickel silver, resin, Herman Miller chair) by Young Joon Kwak; photographed by Ruben Diaz