Cecelia Coker Bell Gallery to Open with JinMan Jo Exhibition

HARTSVILLE, S.C. – Aug. 20, 2013 – The Cecelia Coker Bell Gallery begins its 2013-2014 season with an exhibition of sculpture by South Korean artist JinMan Jo.

JinMan Jo’s sculpture exhibit opens Aug. 26, with a reception in the Cecelia Coker Bell Gallery from 7 to 8 p.m. Light refreshments will be served, and the reception is free and open to the public.

JinMan Jo will visit his show on Friday, Sept. 20, which is the last day of his exhibit. During the morning, he will speak to student groups about his work, and, at 3 p.m., he will give a gallery talk in the Cecelia Coker Bell Gallery. The afternoon gallery talk/reception is also free and the public is invited.

On a personal level, JinMan Jo finds society’s increasing focus on electronic media and consumerism disturbing. As relationships between people become electronically diluted, and consumer goods evermore short lived, he looks for symbols of strength in his sculpture. He works primarily in durable materials like stone, steel and wood. He welds, wires and cements these materials in ways that visually reinforce their durability. His sculptures appear ready to resist any assault and offer counter balance to the ephemeral aspects of contemporary civilization.

“Thick steel bends during forging and hammering, thin wires are welded together and weak things overlap and connect with each other to become strong,” said JinMan Jo. “Each element makes an undeniable contribution to the whole. I want these substances to individually represent the required strength that is needed to withstand greater forces of nature.”

JinMan Jo’s work has been exhibited in solo shows in the United States and Korea as well as numerous group exhibitions. His work is included in the collections of the Gail Art Museum in GaPyon, Korea; the Seosan Art Center, Seosan, Korea; the National Museum of Contemporary Art, Seoul, Korea; the Summit Street Gallery, Iowa City, Iowa, and the Utah State University College of Business in Logan, Utah. He has been honored twice with the Outstanding Achievement Award in Contemporary Sculpture by the International Sculpture Center. He currently teaches at the University of Wisconsin–Stevens Point.

Originally from South Korea, JinMan Jo received a Bachelor of Fine Arts in sculpture from the University of Seoul in Seoul, Korea, in 1999. He earned a Master of Arts and Master of Fine Arts from the University of Iowa in 2002 and 2003.

The Cecelia Coker Bell Gallery is located in the Gladys C. Fort Art Building on the Coker College campus. Gallery hours are from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, while classes are in session.

For more information about the gallery, contact gallery director and assistant professor of art Larry Merriman at 843-383-8156 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or visit http://www.ceceliacokerbellgallery.com/.

Coker College upholds and defends the intellectual and artistic freedom of its faculty and students as they study and create art through which they explore the full spectrum of human experience. The college considers such pursuits central to the spirit of inquiry and thoughtful discussion, which are at the heart of a liberal arts education.

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Coker College readies undergraduates for personal and professional success through a distinctive four-year program that emphasizes a practical application of the liberal arts as well as hands-on and discussion-based learning within and beyond the classroom. Coker is ranked among the “Best Colleges” in the South by U.S. News & World Report as well as The Princeton Review. Located in Hartsville, S.C., Coker is within two hours of the cultural, financial and recreational resources of Charlotte, Columbia, Charleston and Myrtle Beach.

For more information, contact Chris Dougherty - 843.383.8018

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