‘Tongue-in-cheek quality’: Baik’s work on display at Beers. Photograph: Beers Gallery

Tigers, snakes, humans and birds comingle in the imagination of Korean painter Hyangmok Baik.

The artist’s solo show, currently on at Beers Gallery, offers a glimpse of a creative world stuffed full of colour and off-beat imagery.

Block figures with different skin tones – white, black, yellow and bright green – are juxtaposed with flora and fauna in vibrant hues, creating a phantasmagoria of cultural references together with and iconography that seems to have come straight out of the artist’s head.

Baik says he tries to ‘express the stories that no one can remember but me’. Photograph: Beers Gallery

Baik says of his work: “Sometimes we can remember the characters in our dreams, but mostly we can’t. I try to express the stories that no one can remember but me, as dreams I’ve never experienced, and as uncannily familiar moments someone has maybe experienced before, in the past.”

The large and richly-textured canvasses brush lightly by social stereotypes – the voluptuous and garrulous woman, the square-jawed serious man. There is a lovely tongue-in-cheek quality to this work, and the more one looks, the more one sees.

Hyangmok Baik: Forgotten By Us runs until 7 August, Beers Gallery, 51 Little Britain, EC1A 7BH.


Support us

The coronavirus outbreak meant that the Hackney Citizen was unable to print a monthly newspaper for three months.

We're grateful that we have since been able to resume printing. This would not have been possible without the generosity of our readers, whose donations kept the paper from disappearing completely at a distressing time for residents.

A huge thank you to everyone who gave their time and money to support us through the lockdown, and to those who continue to do so as we slowly recover from the dramatic fall in advertising revenues, on top of the existing challenges threatening the future of local journalism.

A one-off donation or a regular contribution from anyone who can afford it will help our small team keep the newspaper in print and the website running in the coming months and years.

Find out how you can donate.

Thank you for your support, and stay safe.

The Hackney Citizen team