Taken By Haley Indorato (Series)

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I explore gender fluidity in my art, assuming a fictional identity as a female, although I am mostly a straight Asian male, who occasionally fantasizes about becoming a woman. My life is a struggle between two wolves inside of me—the aggressive and angry, and the gentle and beautiful sides of my personality. While I often feed the former rather than the latter, I recognize the immense merits of soft power and the beauty of femininity. My art contrasts the logic of domination that is the core logical basis of patriarchy (oppression of women) and the oppression of colored people, queer people, and nature. While I usually thirst for greater power in order to “win” and “defeat” enemies—real or imagined—and evil itself, I also appreciate the beauty of femininity and the vulnerability of human sexuality. I imagine myself as the beautiful and feminine other through composite images in which I, a male, turn into a woman or an androgynous being. This middle ground is a fertile spot for de-otherization and subverting the logic of domination, which enables every form of oppression and inequality on Earth since the dawn of history. It takes greater courage and power to put oneself in the vulnerable position of beauty and self-expression. I believe that is the real purpose for human existence, not domination and oppression. —Chunbum Park

Chunbum Park is a South Korean artist who paints figuratively about his own desires based in fantasy and the beauty of the female form. Exploring gender fluidity, Park paints fantasies of himself appearing as a woman in order to reverse the power relations of the male artist and the female subject and because he finds the images that he created new and exciting. Since perception is an alternate form of reality, and images are sufficient vehicles to express this reality, Park places his transformation as a woman in his paintings as a form of fantasy. Through his paintings, Park changes the nature of the male gaze by engaging in self gaze based in fantasy. Androgyny is a key trait that enables the convergence of femininity and masculinity in his works. His process is similar to putting on makeup and plastic surgery, changing up and beautifying some parts of him that appear masculine. Park was born in Seoul, South Korea in 1991 and came to America in 2000 to study English and attend school. He attended Montgomery Bell Academy in Nashville, TN, in his high school years. Subsequently, he studied art at the Art Students League of NY and obtained his BFA in Fine Arts from the School of Visual Arts in 2020. He invented an art auction card game called ArtBid and runs a website called Emerging Artists Collective, where he interviews other emerging artists. He is currently an MFA Fine Arts Studio candidate at the Rochester Institute of Technology.