• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 2028

    Japanese & Korean Art

    18 September 2008, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 395

    Kang Ik-Joong (B. 1960)

    Happy Buddha, 2007

    Price Realised  


    Kang Ik-Joong (B. 1960)
    Happy Buddha, 2007
    Signed and dated Ik-Joong Kang 2007, A21 C
    Mixed media on wood
    30 x 30in. (76.2 x 76.2cm.)

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    In a statement quoted on the World Wide Web, Kang describes how he came to his unique compositions of discrete miniature paintings on canvas or on individual blocks of wood, mounted as here:

    I developed the 3 x 3-inch format during my days as an art student at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn--but outside the classroom, in response to practical necessity. As an impoverished student, I worked a total of twelve hours a day at a Korean grocery store in Manhattan, and as a watchman at a flea market in Far Rockaway, Queens. Looking for ways to effectively utilize time spent on long subway rides, I discovered that 3-inch square canvases fit easily into my pocket and into the palm of my hand. My lengthy commute became transformed into work time in a mobile studio. (See "Dreams and Reality: Korean American Contemporary Art; http://www.koamart2003.com/Artist06.htm)