Joon Hee Kim

Artist Statement

My work explores significance of human existence, examining and reconciling diverse identities and heritages, as well as compelling forces of beauty and desire. Art is no longer separated from everyday life as objects keeps records of knowledge, frame at a time and place. I use the unique language of ceramics to communicate my thoughts and observations to the world. The central subject of my work is individuality and imperfectness of human: Perceiving world as human stories, exploring ceramic sculptures’ culturally, historically and technically. It investigates creative value of processes employed by analysis of historical objects, actively reinterpreting and subverting heritage of history, engaging traces of human presence with contemporary concerns. It’s said human is a living vessel and the pieces I make are sculptural interpretations of human form as a vessel, bringing familiarities of language and readymade to provoke sense of memories, experience, and re-use. Exquisite sculpture forms are made with fine attention to detail, instantly assured and delicate, exhibiting the creative value of the process. I collect things that I see and experience like all humans, moving ordinary into symbolic archetype reconciling diverse identities and their cultures, giving us a glimpse into the beautiful coexistence in our society. It’s a contemporary object of record and communication conveying new narrative of personal moments to become a measure of human experience.

-- Joon Hee Kim


Originally from Seoul, Korea, Joon Hee Kim is a Canadian artist. Her work explores the human existence by examining and reconciling diverse identities and heritages, as well as the compelling forces of beauty and desire. She began her artist journey as a graphic designer working extensively as an art director, then combined her passion for design with patisserie studies as a chef, all lead to becoming intrigued with ceramics at Sheridan College. As a recipient of the Cecil Lewis Sculpture Scholarship, she completed Masters in Fine art at Chelsea College of Arts in UK before undertaking her professional practice in Europe and Japan. Brimming with personal anecdotes and engaging narratives, her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally, including a solo exhibition at the Clay and Glass gallery. Through innovative challenges of daily life she is the recipient of many awards including the Best of Craft and Design and Best of Ceramics at Toronto Outdoor Art Fair as well as the winner of the 2020 Winifred Shantz Award for Ceramics. After receiving Canada Council for the Arts and Ontario Arts Council grants, she travelled to both national and international artistic residencies to examine her heritage within the lenses of multiple influences. Following the Banff Clay Revival Residency, she was one of six-selected artists for Canadian Craft Biennial. Then she attended the Shigaraki Ceramic Cultural Park Residence in Japan, the Ceramic Centre Residency in Berlin, and the Ceramic Artist Exchange Tandem 2019 in Neumünster, Germany.