Painting with fire | April 9, 2014 | Almanac | Almanac Online |


Arts & Entertainment - April 9, 2014

Painting with fire

by Renee Batti

An exhibition of works by Atherton artist Mirang Wonne opens this week at the de Saisset Museum at Santa Clara University, with an opening reception on Wednesday, April 9.

Ms. Wonne's work is "rarely as it seems," according to the exhibition brochure — and indeed, it would be difficult to perceive from afar that the large silky sheets displayed in her installation are in fact thin wire mesh screens, or that the fluid, evocative images on the screens are created with a blowtorch.

The choice of that unlikely artistic "brush" gives the exhibition its name: Fire Script.

Born in Korea, Ms. Wonne studied art first in her native country, then in Paris. She received a doctorate in aesthetics from the Sorbonne before moving to New York, and moved to Atherton in 1984.

As she evolved as an artist, she traded traditional canvas and oil paints for more industrial media, including metals and acid, to create images largely inspired by nature. She works from a studio at the Hunter's Point Shipyard in San Francisco.

Ms. Wonne's work has been shown in exhibits around the world. Her stainless steel mesh screens have been exhibited at the Asian Art Museum in San Francisco, the Triton Museum of Art in Santa Clara, Sung-Gok Museum in Seoul, and In-Chon Emigrant Museum in Korea.

The de Saisset exhibit opens Thursday, April 10, and runs through June 15. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission is free.

A preview and reception for museum members is set for 6 to 7 p.m. April 9; a reception from 7 to 8:30 p.m. is open to the public.

The museum is at 500 El Camino Real in Santa Clara, on the university campus.


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