Simon Ko is a painter currently based in Seoul, South Korea. He grew up in New York and received his Bachelor's degree in Fine Art from The Cooper Union in 2011, and a Master's degree in Fine Art from Yale University in 2017. 


Ko’s work loosely references his own personal history as he explores the complexities of human emotion. He showcases idealised or streamlined versions of connection in an effort to communicate the idiosyncrasies of loving and being loved. Ko is specifically interested by the impact of connection on the self. This emotional exchange rests in each painting’s core and, a result, encourages a certain reciprocity between the artist and the viewer. 


Ko’s process typically involves a mix of writing, sketching and occasionally working with a mode. His composition is defined and intentional. While his brush strokes are uncomplicated, his use of imagery is highly symbolic. Bubbles rising to the surface of the painting are memories of past connections, a flickering candle is the dying ember of a couple’s love. Such techniques allow Ko to subtly evoke a range of emotions, despite the graphic aesthetic he employs. His use of custom tools and modelling paste result in a highly textured and imperfect canvases. This stucco-esque effect is an intentional effort to mirror the imperfections and complexities of human relations, perfection is an illusion. 


In the past few years, Ko has participated in several exhibitions internationally including solo-exhibitions with Nathalie Karg Gallery, New York, NY; Eve Gallery, Seoul, South Korea; Pipe Gallery, Seoul, South Korea; Seojung Art - Busan, Seoul, South Korea, and group exhibitions with Galerie BHAK, Seoul, South Korea, and Galerie Dengyun, Shanghai, China. His work has been featured in various publications including Art World Magazine, CNB Korea, and Artsy. He has held a residency at the Vermont Studio Center, Johnson, VT. 

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