[Emily Potts] Last week’s Creative Chain featured the extraordinary work of Scott Massey, Paul Sahre and Suckzoo Han. This week we lead off with the person who inspires Suckzoo Han.
In his own words, Suckzoo Han is inspired by …
When I was a graphic designer for a relatively well-known fashion retailer headquartered in Philadelphia, I was often in a position of promoting something that I had no real engagement with. It’s an inevitable part of design practice, but it creates a detachment between the producer and his object. I think we overcome those kinds of sad realities when we make gifts for people. And I think Jaime Sunwoo’s beautiful handmade gifts are superb examples of this. Jaime studied studio art in LaGuardia Arts High School in New York City, and is now an undergraduate art major at Yale University. I am very lucky to meet people like Jaime — she refuses those fancy commodities for birthday gifts.
Painting on wood plank
Four apples. And in Korean it says, “Sa-Gua-Gotten-Ippen-Tara-Ipp-Giddo-Hajiyo,” which means “Tara is as beautiful as an apple.” Before I was introduced to this painting, I thought my favorite painting with apples was, of course, Caravaggio’s Basket of Fruit (c. 1599).
Jaime Sunwoo is inspired by …
Also known as Nong, he is the head of the Thai Arts Alliance in New York City. The first project he worked on when he moved to New York was to paint the doors in my brother’s apartment. His work transformed my brother’s house into a sanctuary. When my mother laid eyes on the doors, she quickly commissioned him to paint the doors in her house. Since he painted our doors, Nong has painted many commercial and residential spaces, including the Thai embassy.
Jaime’s closet door
This is a closet door he painted in my room. The door looks like a portal into some sort of Asian Narnia, and sometimes I feel like I am not doing it justice by only storing clothes behind it.
This is a closet door he painted in my mother’s room. His work is influenced by Buddhist themes. Here, Nong shows the cycle of a blooming lotus, with the entire piece resembling a maternal figure.
Nong is inspired by …
Laddawan Zannettis is a talented Thai graphic designer who creates many interesting projects. I have known her for more than 10 years and have witnessed the development of her work. She has not only inspired me, but also many other designers in the field.
This is her wedding invitation, which looks like a passport, describing the journey of her love from Bangkok to New York.
An Immigrant Designer
This shows aspects of her character as a designer living in New York City with a language barrier, and the struggles she faces as an outsider. The suitcases also convey aspirations, love, dreams, ambition, but also anger, sadness, isolation and confusion, in three periods of time — transition, adversity and identity.
Tune in right here next Wednesday to see the start of a new Creative Chain.
Take a look at the complete chain any time.
All line art portraits created by Fred Schaub.