Timothy Hyunsoo Lee (born 1990, South Korea), is an emerging Korean-American artist working in Brooklyn, New York, USA. His love for drawing began as a child, but his decision to pursue art professionally happened during his last year as a Biology, Drawing, and Neuroscience major at Wesleyan University (Middletown, CT). Drawn to the studio, and the creative process of making art, Timothy withdrew his ambitions of attending medical school and rented a studio in Williamsburg upon graduation, where he currently works.
Hyunsoo Lee’s works are inspired by themes of social stigma, identity, psychological disorders, and more recently, of spirituality and religion. He explores these themes through a novel vector – paintings and sculptures consisting largely of cell-like marks that vary in size, color, and saturation. His works are seen as ethereal and delicate, but the extremely labor-intensive compositions, marked by intensely obsessive repetitions, quickly betray that initial perception. Exploring his own history of anxiety disorders through his art, Timothy confronts and manipulates his tics and compulsions and channels them into his works. In responding to his anxiety with art, he has developed a novel system of mind-mapping – “a cartography of his psychopathology” – to study a part of himself that initially drew him to study developmental biology and neuroscience in college.
The artist works almost exclusively in watercolour and gouache, and prefers this medium over other paints and marking systems due to watercolor’s unstable nature. Mastering watercolor primarily involves understanding the pigment’s interaction with water, and the solution’s interaction with its surface, and every application of paint will result in a different mark. Thus, watercolor prevents him from “fussing” over trivial details in his works.
Timothy’s first solo exhibition, “Traces”, was exhibited at Wook & Lattuada Gallery, New York, USA, in 2013. Since then, he has also exhibited regionally at the Scholastic Inc. Store in SoHo, 2013; at Hundred Forsyth Gallery in the LES, 2013, and internationally at York St. Mary’s in York, UK, 2013; and at the Pink Art Fair in Seoul, South Korea, 2014. He been honored by organizations such as the Aesthetica Art Prize, The Alliance for Young Artists & Writers, and the National YoungArts Foundation. Timothy was the 2014 recipient of the VSA Emerging Young Artist Award given by the Kennedy Center (Washington DC, USA), as well as the International Emerging Artist Award in Dubai.
2012 Wesleyan University. Bachelor of Arts. High honors, Studio Art.
2012 Middletown, CT (USA). Biology. Studio Art (drawing). Neuroscience & Behavior.
2019 XOXO, comet boy. Sabrina Amrani Gallery, Madrid, Spain.
2016 No one dies alone. Sabrina Amrani Gallery, Madrid, Spain.
2014 double-sided. Sabrina Amrani Gallery, Madrid, Spain.
2013 Works on Paper. Scholastic Inc. Store, New York, USA.
2013 Traces. Wook & Lattuada Gallery, New York, USA.
2012 secretive skin. Ezra & Cecile Zilkha Gallery, Wesleyan University, Middletown, CT, USA.
2018 DIY. Galerie Joseph Paris. Contempo Arts. Paris, France.
2018 Art Theorema #1. Salone Delgli Incanti, presented by Imago Mundi. Trieste, Italy.
2017 Harlem postcards. Studio Museum Harlem. NYC, USA
2016 Contained. Chashama Project Space. NYC, USA
2016 RCA Secret Dubai. In collaboration with Alserkal Avenue + Art Dubai. Dubai, UAE.
2016 Framing Religion – Connections and Conflicts. GB Stuart Gallery, Carlisle Arts & Learning Center. Carlisle, PA, USA.
2015 A Curious Blindness. Columbia University. New York, USA.
2015 The Journey. S. Dillon Ripley Center, The Smithsonian Institution. Washington DC, USA.
2014 La Forme Animale. Galerie Venise Cadre. Casablanca, Morocco. Curated by Zoulikha Bouabdellah.
2014 IEAA (International Emerging Artist Award) Exhibition. Dubai, UAE.
2014 Me, Myself & I. Runnels Gallery, Eastern New Mexico University. Portales, NM, USA.
2013 Vacation Days. Hundred Forsyth Gallery. New York, USA.
2013 Aesthetica Art Exhibition, York St. Mary’s, York, UK.
2012 Studio Art Thesis Group Exhibition, Ezra & Cecile Zilkha Gallery, Wesleyan University. Middletown, CT, USA.
2012 Swerved, South Gallery, Wesleyan University Center for the Arts. Middletown, CT, USA.
2019 viennacontemporary. Sabrina Amrani. Vienna, Austria.
2019 ARCOmadrid. Sabrina Amrani Gallery. Madrid, Spain
2019 India Art Fair. Sabrina Amrani Gallery. New Delhi, India
2018 Artissima. Sabrina Amrani Gallery. Turin, Italy
2018 The Armory Show, Sabrina Amrani Gallery (solo). New York, USA
2018 ARCOmadrid, Sabrina Amrani Gallery. Madrid, Spain
2018 India Art Fair, Sabrina Amrani Gallery (solo). New Delhi, India
2017 ARCOmadrid, Sabrina Amrani Gallery. Madrid, Spain
2017 India Art Fair, Sabrina Amrani Gallery. New Delhi, India
2016 ArtBo, Sabrina Amrani Gallery. Bogota, Colombia
2016 Art Brussels. Sabrina Amrani Gallery. Brussels, Belgium
2016 Art Dubai. Sabrina Amrani Gallery. Dubai, UAE
2015 ArtInternational. Sabrina Amrani Gallery. Istanbul, Turkey
2015 ARCOmadrid. Sabrina Amrani Gallery (solo/duo). Madrid, Spain
2015 Art Stage Singapore. Sabrina Amrani Gallery (solo). Singapore
2014 First Prize, The VSA Emerging Young Artists Program, sponsored by The Kennedy Center and The Volkswagen Group of America. Washington DC, USA.
2014 Honorable Mention, [Me, Myself & I] juried exhibition. Runnels Gallery, Eastern New Mexico University. Portales, NM, USA.
2014 IEAA (International Emerging Artist Award), 3rd Edtion. Dubai.
2013 Art.Write.Now.Pop-Up! Artist-in-Residence Program, The Alliance for Young Artists & Writers/Scholastic Inc., New York, USA.
2013 National Art Educator Medal, The Scholastic Art & Writing Awards, New York, USA.
2013 Invited participating artist, Artist Pension Trust (APT) - Global One trust, New York, USA.
2012 Long-listed artist (Painting & Drawing), Aesthetica Art Prize, London, UK.
2012 Elizabeth Verveer Tishler Award, Wesleyan University Department of Art & Art History, Middletown, CT, USA.
2017 Artist-in-Residence. The Basu Foundation for the Arts. Kolkata, India
2016 ChaNORTH. Chashama. Pine Plains, New York, USA
2013 ART.WRITE.NOW Scholastic INC. / The Alliance for Young Artists & Writers. New York, USA
2018 Come back home. A public art project commissioned by the MTA Art & Design and the Long Island Railroad for the LIRR Stewart Manor Station [Hempstead line] in Garden City, New York.
2018 1000 Attempts at a Reconciliation. India Art Fair. Solo projects. Presented by Sabrina Amrani. Madrid, Spain.
2017 Annual Foundraiser Auction. Christies Auction House. Asia Art Archive. Hong Kong.
2017 Public Art Commission. The MTA of New York. Stuart Manor Station (LIRR). Garden City, New York, USA.
OCULUS VR. Facebook (Seattle, USA)
COLECCION D.O.P. Fundacion D.O.P. (Caracas, Venezuela; Paris, France; Madrid, Spain)
FUNDACION DOP. Caracas, Venezuela
MTA ARTS & DESIGN. The Metropolitan Transit Authority of New York (New York, USA)
THE SOCIETY AT MSKCC. Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center (New York, USA)
IMAGO MUNDI COLLECTION. Supported by Fondazione Benetton Studi Ricerche (Treviso, Italy)
BASU FOUNDATION FOR THE ARTS. Kolkata, India.
CLEVELAND CLINIC ABU DHABI. Abu Dhabi, UAE
TP CONTEMPORARY. London, UK
APT Institute, New York, USA.
The Society at MSKCC, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, New York, USA.
2016 WIDEWALLS. Timothy Hyunsoo Lee’s exhibition at Sabrina Amrani brings a new kind of optimism
2016 ARTSY Editorial. At Sabrina Amrani, Timothy Hyunsoo Lee contemplates Serenity and Death
2016 Periodistas (Es). Timothy Hyunsoo Lee: Nadie muere solo
2015 Nomadic Press. Artist and Mental Illness Interview Series: Timothy Hyunsoo Lee
2015 ARTSY. Precision and Instability in Timothy Hyunsoo Lee’s Mind Maps
2015 Artitute. Reflections on Art Stage Singapore: Timothy Hyunsoo Lee
2014 Duas Arte Contemporáneo. double-sided de Timothy Hyunsoo Lee
2014 ARTSY. Art to Exorcise: Timothy Hyunsoo Maps his Mind with Watercolor
2018 Seeking Beauty: Timothy Hyunsoo Lee. GALERIE MAGAZINE, 2018 Summer Issue (New York)
2018 Names you should know at Armory. THE ART NEWSPAPER, ARNORY SHOW 2018 ISSUE (New York)
2016 Danger. THE HARVARD ADVOCATE, 150 TH ANNIVERSARY ISSUE (Cambridge, MA, USA)
2015 A Curious Blindness. COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY (New York)
2015 The Journey. THE KENNEDY CENTER FOR PERFORMING ARTS (Washington DC, USA)
2014 La Forme Animale. GALERIE VENISE CADRE (Casablanca, Morocco)
2013 Spring Anthology: 100 Contemporary Artists. AESTHETICA MAGAZINE (London, UK)