Komelia Hongja Okim has been helping the nation celebrate Korean immigration to the United States via art. “I feel it’s my duty to do something for Koreans in America and Americans in Korea,” she says. “So I arrange traveling shows and art seminars. I took a lot of American art to Korea. I’ve been doing this 20 years now.”
Hawaii is currently benefiting from Okim’s efforts with “Traces and Trajectories,” showing at the Academy Art Center through Jan. 31. The show features 10 artists who, like Okim, were born in Korea and came to build lives and become citizens in America. Seven, including Okim, are art educators at colleges across the country; the other three are professional artists. Included in the lineup are Hawaii’s Jinja Kim and Kloe Kang.