Winners of the 2019 Art Scholarship: Hanna Choi
Last year, Exponent started an annual art scholarship for Mormon women of color. The goal of the scholarship continues to be to amplify the voices of LDS women artists of color by lending needed support for them to be able to continue to develop their art.
Over the next few weeks, we will be sharing the work and words of some of the recipients of that scholarship. These extraordinary women have the ability to seismically change the artistic language of the Church: imagine Come Follow Me manuals, Church members’ homes or Church building hallways full of their work. We’re grateful that they shared it with this community and look forward to announcing this year’s scholarship very soon. If you’d like to contribute to the fund for this year’s scholarship, please contact exponentiieditor AT gmail DOT com.
Hanna Choi: A Korean artist blooming in Rexburg, Idaho!
I was born and raised in Seoul, South Korea until I came to BYU to study. I always loved art but I was afraid to try and pursue an art career. However, one day on my mission in South Korea, my 6-year-old investigator asked me to draw Thor. So, I drew it with a pencil and saw that it brought the biggest smile on her face. That day, with the simple incident, something has changed. I thought, ‘What am I doing with my gift? God gave me this precious gift. I could make a little girl smile. I should use it to brighten the world.’ Later when I returned from my mission, this thought helped me have courage and eventually led me to the application to the art program at BYU. In my last semester at BYU, I met my husband who was also from Korea and getting ready to apply to BYUI. After we got married, we moved to Rexburg where our new chapter began. Adjusting to married life was joyful but differnet, and in the midst of this new journey I have found the role of art in my life even more. As a wife and a future mother-to-be, I have been practicing and pursuing my own way of art to brighten the world a little more today. “Although thy beginning was small, but thy latter end should greatly increase.” (Job 8:7)
My art statement is based on the Articles of Faith 1:13. I seek after anything virtuous, innocent, lovely, and pure. Especially I love to portrait motherhood, womenhood, babies, and purity. I love to draw and paint anything that makes the world a little brighter. I am pursuing realism and recently had an idea of combining realism and abstract art together. Both styles are beautiful and we need both. This will come with time in my artworks. One of my ultimate goals is to have my paintings in the temples (my husband who is studying Civil Engineering wants to build temples so it’s perfect!). I desire to be used as His tools when the right time comes. I believe this can come true if I keep improving myself with diligence and efforts.