Austin Kim is a student at the Orange County School of the Arts and he gives a talk about art and minority through an angle that explores the visual language of cultural expression and the power that each artist has in redefining society' lens of different communities. Kim grew up in a Korean household, where many of his experiences centered around struggling to find a way to immerse himself into an American suburbia whilst holding onto his Korean roots. The difficulty in finding that balance led him towards the practice of art and he is now traditionally trained in areas including fashion design, fine art, theatre technology, and experimental art. Much of his inspiration stems from the diversity that runs through the veins of Santa Ana and he creates art that draws engagement with ideas of cultural identity, ethnic gentrification, awareness to the rights of minorities, oppression, and art appropriation.
He begins his talk by explaining his fascination with how art shapes our perspectives of what culture is. He goes through the historic imagery of different cultural depictions and how that can create ideologies, showing the visual dialogue that has been and is currently taking place. Kim explains that there is a clear underrepresentation of minority artists today as well. He explains that is up to us to challenge the visual context that we consume, to question the classifications being informed and ultimately acknowledge that we are contributors and viewers of visual dialogue can make a difference.
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