November 15, 2022
Stickymonger: anxiety and loneliness as a safe space
Paula Latiegui

The origin of the name of the New York-based Korean artist STICKYMONGER comes from the material she worked with in the beginnings of her work: stickers.

Stickymonger's first solo show in 2014 consisted of a giant installation made up exclusively of black and white vinyl. She later began to combine this material with acrylic paint, and since then she has varied every two or three years as her interests have grown, currently using her own personal technique with 'spray point medium', aiming to take the viewer into a world that is both attractive and ominous, enchanting and disconcerting.

Stickymonger studied Multimedia Art and Animation at Ewha Women's University in Seoul.

Her vocation was born with MTV's ID station, whose short clips she admired, and the illustrated books she spent so much time reading as an escape from her lack of friends.

Once she graduated she went on exchange to New York, where she currently resides.  The beginning was not easy due to the financial and visa problems she encountered, so she worked as a graphic designer at Ogilvy and Mather for years until she was able to devote herself exclusively to her profession as an artist.

Her source of inspiration has always been everything she can imagine and make herself feel. That is why she says that, more than ten years ago, she had a dream in which, inside a giant fish tank, several broken Android girls began to talk to her; this experience had such an impact on her that all her work on glass and windows had to do with it. It also goes back to her childhood in the suburbs of a South Korean city, where she grew up next to her father's petrol station and formed her own imaginary universe by playing in the shadow of oil drums and imagining funny situations. The compositions of her later paintings reflect her subjects' anxiety and loneliness in grimaces, presenting these feelings as romantic and comforting.

Stickymonger's studio at NYC’s 3 World Trade Center. © HYPEBEAST
The current exhibition by Stickymonger "It was a very good year, kind of" at VILLAZAN is perhaps the artist’s most personal one yet.
"It was a very good year, kind of" Stickymonger solo show at VILLAZAN. © VILLAZAN

The exhibition features an enfilade of new water-based spray paintings by the internationally-acclaimed contemporary artist, Stickymonger. The exhibition will be on on view until December 10 offers viewers to peruse intricate and highly-conceptual pieces that recount the artist’s childhood memories, adult experiences and imaginative revellings that blend the artist’s past, present and future selves. From tondo works with intricate patterns and large scale paintings that depict the artist’s signature female subjects, the show tackles a myriad of themes including “split identities,” “belonging” and “familial relationships.”

Stickymonger "Mama Told Me_ BitterSweet", 2022. Aerosol paint on canvas, 48 x 60 x 1.5 in. © VILLAZAN
Stickymonger "Mama Told Me_Green", 2022. Aerosol paint on canvas, 48 x 60 x 1.5 in. © VILLAZAN