"My jewelry pieces express desire, hope, and the power of life through organic plant forms"
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So Young Park is originally from South Korea. At an early age she found interest in the arts and concentrated on fine art painting at an art high school. Afterwards she attended Kon-Kuk University in Seoul, South Korea. New experiences there brought metals into her life. The fascination with metals led her to change her life dramatically. After earning a BFA and a MFA in metal and jewelry design in 1999, she opened her own studio called DuDuRim and participated in solo and group exhibitions as a metalsmith and jewelry artist throughout Korea from 1997 to 2000.
In 2001, So Young came to the United States to broaden her experiences with metalsmithing, people, and life in general. She graduated with a second MFA in metal and jewelry design from the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) in 2003. Upon completion of her studies, she taught metalsmithing at Syracuse University and RIT as an adjunct professor from 2003 to 2007.
In 2006, So Young decided to start her career as a jewelry artist. During the same year she taught at several workshops throughout the United States and South Korea. Currently, she is running her own jewelry and metals studio called So Young Park Studio and is actively participating in shows and exhibitions, nationally and internationally, as a jewelry and metalsmithing artist. Recently she returned to Korea to be with her family and continue her business.
Her works are publicized in the Lark Book series: 1000 Rings, 500 Brooches, 500 Wedding Rings,and 500 Gemstone Jewelry by Linda Darty. She also has work shown in Art Jewelry Today 2, 3 by Jeffery B. Sunyder, The Art and Crafts of Making Jewelry by Joanna Gollberg, and many other magazines and catalogs, including the SOFA Chicago Catalogs.
I discovered an important role that plant forms can have in my metal work. Human life and plant life have similar growth and life characteristics. The human nativity can be regarded as the sprouting of new life comparable to the blooming of a flower. From an atheistic point view, nature reveals the beauty of the eternal cycles of life. My jewelry pieces express desire, hope, and the power of life through organic plant forms that are artistically rendered in a simplistic, geometric, and sophisticated manner.
The jewelry pieces are assembled through the harmonic use of wires, gems, and tiny concave shaped metal pieces creating, elegant, yet unusual visual forms. Expressing the emotions I have towards nature through the use of seed shapes in jewelry helps to symbolize the origins of life. The use of wires and other small elements on the teapot represent the single cell I connected together to create life. Each piece contributes to the long and painful process to create a beautiful piece, a beautiful life.