Daieny Chin Interview

Daieny Chin

Daieny Chin on folktales and mythology, spiritual dichotomies, & the privilege of pursuing art.

How did you get into making art?

I’ve always been creatively driven, and as a child I would particpate in scholastic art competitions in elementary school. I took it more seriously when I was in middle school and applied for an Art High School called LACHSA.

I got rejected and never got past the interview process, but fortunately, I have an amazing mother who has always supported me in my art ventures. She put me through Mission Renaissance Fine Art classes and Saturday High classes at Art Center College of Design throughout my high school years.

I come from an immigrant family, and being able to pursue art is a privilege that older generations in my family never had. I recogonize that fully, and try to honor my mother’s sacrfices, and being able to paint allows me to do that.

What are you currently working on?

I just finished a solo booth at SPRING/BREAK art fair called “Mythos Unveiled” with Filo Sofi Arts. It’s a body of work that’s loosely inspired by my childhood and teenage years growing up in an Evanglical Christian household/family. It also incoporates a lot of Korean folktales and mythology, particularly, images depicted in historic Korean artwork. There’s many juxtapositions and conflicting feelings/metaphors that clashes with each other.

I wanted to depict that spiritiual dichotomy I’ve always felt.

Daieny Chin

What inspired you to get started on this body of work?

There was always this tension growing up with my grandmother and mother as they were adamantly against any beliefs or spirituality that went against their own Christian beliefs. But my mother subconsiously always partook in a lot of Korean supersititons or would tell me traditional folktales when I was growing up. It was this rising tension that existed, and I wanted to depict that spritiual dichotomy I’ve always felt. It’s almost this fight, or maybe existence of the East and West.

Do you work on distinct projects or do you take a broader approach to your practice?

I think it’s a combination of both. I start with distinct projects but it escalates into a broader approach as I progress through my series of work. I like to take something from each past project and incoporate them in my future projects. For instance, I did a series of work based on my mother and aunt, and it was heavily influnced by Shamanism and Korean mythological creatures. I still try to paint some aspects of that in my present and future work.

What’s a typical day like in your studio?

Currrently, it’s a really relaxed process. I used to have a big studio in Downtown LA, but I moved everything so I can work out of my dining room inside my one bedrooom apartment. It’s actually been a positive experience!

I start working around 1-2p.m. For the first hour, I’m doing research for my paintings or preparing color swatches. I start actually painting from 2-7p.m., or until my partner comes home. I spend the next two hours eating dinnner and catching up with him. Then from 9p.m.-12a.m., I continue painting again. I try not to paint after midnight. I know I’m not productive late at night, even if I try.

Who are your favorite artists?

There are so many! Dominique Fung, Alex Gardner, Alicia McCarthy, and Emily Yong Beck are some of my favorite artists right now.

Where do you go to discover new artists?

Through friends!

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