Thank you to everyone who came out to see my two most recent bodies of work - Hometown Hero (Chink) and Thinly Worn - at SPRING/BREAK Art Show in NYC, curated by the wonderful Debbi Kenote and Til Will of Open House. The reception was incredible, and I'm humbled by the positive feedback and grateful for the meaningful conversations I had with so many people during the run of the show. Open House has a 30-minute interview with me up on their site which explores the themes and background of these two installations.
Works exhibited at SPRING/BREAK Art Show are still available for purchase through their site, so please click on over if you haven't already. A portion of my sales will be donated to the Southern Poverty Law Center.
“Hometown Hero (Chink) presents a rarely depicted view into the tensions inherent in being Asian American within the American South and I found that electrifying. Art is most compelling when it gives voice to new stories. Making this all the more special, art fairs, which tend to be more akin to a really expensive street fair than a museum experience, don’t often have room for works like Estabrook. Thus, the work’s very existence makes SPRING/BREAK a welcome outlier in the expanse of Armory week.” - Emily Colucci
"If human personalities are a collection of characters we play in different situations, Korean-American artist Valery Jung Estabrook is done with 'acting the part.' In a video artwork called Thinly Worn, she escapes the roles institutions in her life expect from her by performing exaggerated versions of herself through therapeutic use of Korean tal masks." - Beckett Mufson
"Hometown Hero (Chink), a three-part installation by Valery Jung Estabrook, is dominated by a recliner in the center of the room, upholstered with the pattern of a Confederate flag. “I wanted to make an uncomfortable space with comfortable materials,” Jung Estabrook says, as a way of speaking to the “state of psychological exile” common to immigrants who’ve found home in the American south." - Will Fenstermaker
“Southern comfort is anything but comfortable in Valery Jung Estabrook’s Hometown Hero (Chink), a full-scale living room replete with a working TV, displaying the artist’s video work. ”Valery is from the South, so there’s definitely a critique of Southern culture, but she’s also Korean-American,’ said co-curator Debbi Kenote of the piece, which attempts to reconcile this dual identity. The soft upholstered surfaces of the work belie the deep-seated, destructive force of racism associated with the Confederate flag, which boldly decorates the room’s cushy reclining chair.” - Sarah Cascone