Dojoong Jo, the artist of soil, has been working on painting for his life since he won the national exhibition in his first year in college (the youngest national exhibition winner in Korea at the time).
Since 1997, he has been the first in the world to use soil as a material, leading the earth painting genre in the world art history.
It is hard to believe even when looking at the painter’s paintings that soil can express so many colors.
Can you believe it? That the soil is classified into hundreds of colors.
This is truly unique. The only one in the world. There wasn’t in the past, and probably not even after.
He left a great mark in the history of world art.
There were painters who partially used soil, but no painter has done such high-fidelity work by classifying the soil into hundreds of colors.
When looking at art history, works that have made unprecedented attempts and ‘created’ new genres have been evaluated as great achievements in the future.
The artist’s work is drawn with soil ‘, which is the color of nature itself. In a modern society where the importance of eco-friendliness is gradually emerging, it will be familiar material to all mankind.
‘You can create similar colors with oil paints, but you can’t express emotions. It is possible to draw nature as closely as possible using oil paint. But drawing using natural colors cannot be the same. ‘ In this way, the artist gained originality through the soil.
Hello Soilart Jo! You are the first artist in the world to use soil as a material. Tell me more about that, what inspired you to use soil, and do you remember the moment of inspiration?
Soilart Jo: I used to love oil paintings. Although it was well-received by people, the problem of originality could not be reached with oil painting. I looked for countless methods and techniques, but I came to the conclusion that it is impossible to find originality with that degree of change, and even now, that thought remains the same. When traces of someone’s attempts a hundred or two hundred years ago were found, they were relentlessly discarded. Because it makes no sense to follow others’ accomplishments.
‘There is no more. Even though I was trying to find what I didn’t have, I had a hard time, so it would be better to give up at this point.’
‘God, help me to paint pictures that cannot be seen in this world!’ When I no longer had the energy to work before bed, I lay down and prayed.
One day, when I was going up and down the mountain, a red flower bloomed a little away. That’s when the frost is about to fall. The plant is frosted and its head is bowed, which is weird. When I went, it wasn’t a flower, it was a lump of soil. At that moment,’ This is what I was looking for!’ The thoughts of thinking flow through endlessly. An electric current flowed all over my body. I just jumped home with a chunk of red dirt. I don’t run. My personality is optimistic, so I walk in rain or snow.
That day I ran Pababak. I put red soil right in front of the oil painting. Compared to the color of oil paintings, the emotions are very different.
Also, you say “You can create similar colors with oil paints, but you can’t express emotions”. Could you expand on that thought a bit?
Soilart Jo: You can create similar colors with oil paints, but you cannot express your emotions. The soil is cozy. Warm. It is comfortable and calm. This feeling cannot be felt with the color of the paint.
- To draw nature as close as possible using oil paint
- Drawing using natural colors
These two cannot be the same. In this way, I was able to gain creativity.
What is the process from start to final artwork, do you envision it from the beginning or is it a different process?
Soilart Jo: Art is a new discovery. So, while I was working on it, I had a desire to break away from the same art form. This discovery had to start with erasing past experiences, knowledge, or experiences. When even the thought of erasing the experience disappears at some point, a new look at the essence of things opens up. From this point on, do you think your eyes open to seeing with your heart? So I wanted to throw away even my thoughts. The new start, which started by rejecting the techniques I enjoyed in the past or the screen composition I used, was a bit vague at first, and I had to feel a bit of anxiety. Sometimes I wanted to cling to the experiences of the past, and unlike my new heart, I felt a strong affection for the old. However, I think that when a painter is free from this burden, he can get a new touch of nature and see it deeper and wider.
Is there a message you are trying to give with your art, or is it something else?
Soilart Jo: Art is longing for eternity.
Digging, picking the soil, sorting the soilOne day I suddenly realized that I was dirt myself. I don’t know if it’s because I remembered the words in the Bible saying,’ The body came from dirt, so it returns to dirt’, but I realized myself as really insignificant dirt. Perhaps that’s why it became more enjoyable to trim and sort the soil. All living things in nature live only the time given by God. I, too, will live for the amount of time God has given me, and in the meantime, I will continue this new work. This work is in the time given to meIt will be the breath to breathe with the soil. The day I take the time God has lent me, I will return to eternity again, and I want to put the image of eternity in my heart and draw it on my canvas.
What’s the most challenging part of your artistic process? And how do you overcome it?
Soilart Jo: Colors that cannot be expressed with paints.The struggle with the soil to get it. It is because the fate of Soil is not unusual to not ask about the history of one eye that seems uncomfortable. Materials such as quartz, feldspar, mica, and calcite in loess are oxidized together with iron. This is just the compass of his long journey, chemistry that turns into a variety of colors such as yellow, purple, red, gray, and off-green. The mysterious color, the various living things in the soil, the solar energy contained in the soil, and the subtle lunar energy were all polyhedral, truly jewel-like soil. I hold a magnifying glass to classify colors that can’t be distinguished with the naked eye. Even if I wrestle with the soil day and night like this, there is a color that is so rare that it disappears with a single brushstroke. Picking out the soil, mixing it with water, and transferring it to the canvas is the process of realizing my weaknesses and weaknesses. For the first 15 years I worked on this soil, my studio was in a remote mountain with no tap water. It was a terrible recluse that neither TV nor radio appeared.
What is clear is that I, who gave up my life and lived in hiding like a desperate man, bloomed again as soil, earth flowers, and red flowers.
Is there a real-life situation that inspired your artwork? And if yes, tell us about it.
Soilart Jo: My work pursues eternity. In the process, I yearn for human life and essence. Realities and situations in all my life inspire my work
The woodpecker with its young became the heart, but because it has a heart, the forest has life. An owl covered with scars that feels like a whole body. It’s just like us humans. The whole body of the bird is a wound, but the bird’s heart is beating. Forest with a heart, forest wounds, knar, wounds and healing, life and hope. The forest is shaped like a bird, and its heart is the heart of a bird bearing a baby. People think abstraction is difficult. After pop art, modern art is moving away from the public. People are moving away from pure painting and pure art. Real art pursues the purity of the soul. Art can hug and heal people’s wounds Through knar2015_ forest with heart, we can know it.
What inspires your creativity?
Soilart Jo: Just as flowers that bloom on red soil are not red soil, flowers that bloom on black soil are not black flowers. For a painter, it will be of greater significance to find the inner fun of the soil dissolved in the color, not the color of the soil through the subtle natural wonders. The beauty of nature created by the soil is contained in my work. It contains all of the calm and comfortable, warmth and warm natural beauty that can be felt in the soil. There is the reverberation of the soul beyond time and space, not limited by time and space. Time and space are naturally formed as if water flows without condensation or interruption. Has there ever been such a picture in our art history and in world art history? Through the eternity that I pursue, humans and nature, and our lives, I pursue eternity and work and results that transcend time and space.
What is your most recent piece of art that you have enjoyed working on the most?
Soilart Jo: Lotus flowers bloom beautifully on the mud. The beautiful sunlight at dawn comes after passing through a long tunnel at night. The brilliant work of my work is the result of patience.
I’ve been hurt my whole life
My work is great, but no one noticed it.
That’s why I like the wounded forest, the hearted forest, the wounded owl most
The owl is me.
A painter with scars
But my heart is still beating.
The creature in the shape of an owl even closes its left eye.
Tree wounds are born into new life through healing.
It’s the painter’s own diary.
It’s the story of all of us
The knar series after 2015 is the culmination of my work
What are you working on right now, and what’s next for you?
Soilart Jo: If I could say something presumptuous, my work brought out new things no less than, or even more, the masters who decorated art history like Picasso and Gogh. As a human, it is difficult to produce any more works. However, as God completed the earth picture.I don’t know if something else will be creative. What I can do is to continue my current work and pray without pride.
Do you see your art as serving a purpose beyond art?
Soilart Jo: If all of the artist’s efforts were to achieve self-realization or to restore his original self, could my creation based on soil and faith achieve that purpose? The polarization caused by the development of capitalism, the economic difficulties of many humans, and the coronavirus make the body sick. In this era, fine art is losing its power. If the primary goal of art is the pursuit of eternity and the purity of the human soul. My work that is closest to nature can be said to be the closest to the purpose of art. If many people come in contact with this innocence and have the opportunity to be freed from physical illness, economic hardship, and mental suffering, My work will achieve a purpose beyond art.
Would you like to share something with our readers who are searching for inspiration, and expand their artistic expression?
Soilart Jo: The painter has been working with soil for 24 years. Oil paintings painted 20 years ago were partially cracked and scratched. But the soil remained unchanged. Just as the murals of the old caves remain unchanged for hundreds of years.
1997, after discovering the soil. I used soil as my abstract technique to paint the beauty of nature, including mountains, fields, and flowers. At first, I used some dirt Gradually I found dozens of colored dirt Hundreds of soil colors have been discovered over a period of over 2000 years. I always prayed for wisdom to help me draw pictures that cannot be seen in this world. And because God listened, my works were born.