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Grand Rapids in 1856

Scene of early Grand Rapids viewed from the...

UICA Curator's Prize

Young Kim of North Carolina was the recipient of the $5000 Curator’s Choice prize from the Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts (UICA). Kim created 50 portraits from salt and red clay and titled his entry “Salt and Earth.” It took Kim more than a week and 2,500 pounds of salt to create his portraits.

Kim had placed ten elements as offerings to decorate the portraits. The works were symbolic of the basic requirements for human subsistence: water, iron powder, sea slat, flour honey, milk, oil, cotton, wine and fire in the form of match-heads.

“Traditionally, art is made to make sure it’s going to last a long time. I’m more interested in art reflecting our own (temporary) existence.” Kim said.

Excerpted from the Grand Rapids Press, October 12, 2009

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