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An Adrenaline Rush Like Nothing Else

Meet Ashley Kim (BFA Fine Arts, Sculpture/New Genres ‘17)

“I guess I can’t imagine being anything else,” says Ashley Kim (BFA Fine Arts, Sculpture/New Genres ‘17). “Being a performance artist is new for me but it just gives me an adrenaline rush like nothing else really does.” Ashley transferred to Otis College from another school, where she studied fashion. “The tight-knit community here is really what I think helped shape my practice,” she says. “I grew a lot, not just as an artist but as a person.”

But fashion and beauty still inform her work. Her senior show featured cosmetics, foundation in particular, as a medium. She created a series of self-portraits “stamped” directly to the wall – using her own made-up face. A corresponding installation and performance played with the idea of an unused room just for display.

“I related that to a woman’s experience as a person who is observed, looked at,” she says. At the exhibition, she performed with her mother. They gazed into each other’s eyes and slowly spread liquid makeup on the walls and vinyl-covered furniture of her installation.“ She taught me beauty,” Ashley says. Foundation, to her, represents “concealing, this repetitive action that we do every single day. There’s an obsessive quality with makeup.”

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