As a yoga teacher, Ja Soon Kim incorporates elements of the meditative practice into her creative work. In her series of botanical arrangements, Kim neatly organizes colorful vegetation into beautifully balanced compositions.
Simply set against either a black or white background, the creations capture the unique shapes, hues, and textures of different species of plants. The botanical elements featured in the series span leaves, flowers, succulents, fruits, vegetables, and even sticks. Laid flat against the backdrops, the arrangements achieve a sense of balance without straightforward symmetry. Kim curates the plants according to color and size, and makes sure that the setup of each configuration conveys a unique sense of stability.
In addition to capturing the aesthetic of the world’s many plants, Kim’s series also explores the way they change throughout the year—an aspect that is intrinsic to her interest in nature. “In spring, cactus flowers,” she writes on her website. “In summer, monsoons fill streams and waterfalls, cottonwood leaves turn bright yellow in fall, and in winter the dusting of snow on pink rocks, cold silence and big sky.”
Kim poetically explores nature in her entire body of work, but her appreciation for its simplicity is particularly evident in her collection of botanical arrangements. By simply and straightforwardly exhibiting each plant, she places all emphasis on their unique forms and colors. As the viewer’s eyes travel from flower to leaf and fruit to vegetable, he or she is able to observe the diversity and beauty of nature.