I’m showing photographs from the No Sleep series at the Center for Photography at Woodstock, opening this Saturday.  Stop by if you’re in the area!

featuring work by CPW’s artists-in-residence from 2007-2009:


January 15 – March 27, 2011
Opening Reception: Saturday January 15, 2011, 4-6 pm

Made in Woodstock V (MIW V) is the fifth installment of the Center for Photography at Woodstock‘s series featuring work created by recent partipants of WOODSTOCK A-I-R, CPW’s residency program for artists of color working in the photographic arts.

Established in 1999, WOODSTOCK A-I-R is a workspace residency program which provides participants with time, facilities, space, and the critical & technical support necessary to move forward. The program encourages the pursuit of creative risk-taking in the inspiring environment of Woodstock, where, working without distraction, photographic artists can focus intensely on their new work, continue works in progress, layout their goals for the future, and break new creative ground.

Representing the broad range of photographic practices and interests that WOODSTOCK A-I-R helps realize, the 18 artists featured in MIW V engage in an inspired and deeply self-aware dialogue on history, politics, representational concerns, and more. As no two residencies are the same, the exhibition reveals the intensely diverse, dynamic interests of the artists as a group, and addresses each image-makers own particular story and voice.

To learn more about this show, click here.

red wing portfolio


The Red Wing project has been added to my website.  Rejoice!

Previous posts about this series:

no more worries
some background

republican eagle article
tractor then, tractor now
4×5 photographs
my first state fair
more 4×5 photos
more 35mm from state fair


These photographs were all taken in the summer of 2008, in Red Wing, Minnesota, the town where my parents met in the early 1970’s.  If I were a book, Red Wing, Minnesota would be my preface.
I went to Red Wing to explore the alternate reality of what my life could have been.  I photographed old friends of my parents but also took pictures of strangers. I photographed farmers, townspeople, and young artists, storefronts, farmland, vacant lots, and interior spaces. For me, photographing Red Wing is like breathing life into a faded snapshot.

During my summer residency at the Center for Photography at Woodstock, I created a limited-edition artist book of my Fairground series.  Here is the inside of the book, before I have it hard-covered (finally):


This is the cover design:


The first image:

© Hee Jin Kang

As always, keeping it simple.

more from red wing


All photographs © Hee Jin Kang 2008



Massive thunderstorms knocked out our internet service on Wednesday, leaving us offline for the remainder of our residency stay. Here’s some impressive lightning from that evening’s storm, filmed from the Anderson Center tower:

So here it is, my interview with the RE and it’s above the fold, folks.

The link is here (seems to work without having to create an account).

Today I did two things that I haven’t done in a real long while (related to my artist talk at the noontime Kiwanis):

First I sang along to “America the Beautiful” and then I said the Pledge of Allegiance. When is the last time you did either of those two things? The words just spilled out of me, having been ingrained into my psyche years ago.

The talk went well, and most importantly, I received this commemorative Red Wing pin – yay!

no more worries


All flustered, I arrived at the Anderson Center Saturday evening. Flight delays, of course (thanks to American Airlines). Plus I forgot to print out a map of the area before leaving home and also neglected to charge my cellphone the night before (was I willing myself to get lost?). With only the Alamo guy’s directions at hand “take the 55 East to the 52 South.” Umm… “then there should be some signs to Red Wing”. OK! The result? Me driving around in circles in my white rental car on Highway 61 with F. on the phone trying to direct me from his googled map while my cellphone kept beeping that I was running out of juice. “Are you at the intersection of 61 and Highway 19?” Yes I am! Around and around. Only to discover I was at the intersection of 61 and County Road 19. Need to drive a little further to hit Highway 19. Woops.

No matter. When I enter the residence, I immediately feel at home here. The building and grounds are beautifully restored. The whole place is photogenic.

© Hee Jin Kang 2008

Then the worries kick in.

I worry about my equipment. Did I bring the right gear? Did I bring enough? And then I decide to let those kinds of stresses go. I just have to work with what I have. My 4×5. My little (oft unreliable) Contax T2. And a digital for snaps. That’s it. Vincent Laforet I am not, though I am duly impressed (via Shoot the Blog).

I worry about the enforced creativity inherent in doing artist residencies. Then I let that go too. I’m a resourceful girl, I can figure something out if the right kind of inspiration doesn’t strike, whatever that may be. If nothing else, there are nice bike paths here, free bikes for our use, a cook who takes care of meals, a stocked fridge, a new town, a state fair, cows, butterflies, red squirrels, turtles.

I worry about my natural inclination against adventurousness. I like to try new things but sometimes it’s a struggle to get out of my comfort zone. Do I lack curiosity? Am I afraid of what’s beyond? Or just plain lazy? I have to let all that go too. Enjoy the process and the experience.

Good pictures might come from this trip but they might not. Just have to let go…

How many artists do you know who’ve been written about in the Red Wing Republican Eagle?

by Ruth Nerhaugen The Republican Eagle

Published Thursday, July 31, 2008

A Korean photographer whose parents met in Red Wing in 1973 will be among the residents at the Anderson Center at Tower View during August. Hee Jin Kang of Brooklyn, New York, plans to work on “The Red Wing Project.” She is coming to retrace her parents’ steps when they first arrived in America. Her father left his village in Korea and came to Red Wing to learn modern farming techniques under a 4-H Federation program. Her mother was training at Norman Hilleren’s Red Wing Nursing Home on a visit sponsored by the America-Korea Nursing School in Seoul. They met, married, then moved back to Korea, where Hee Jin Kang was born. The family eventually emigrated to New York. While in residency, Kang will photograph in and around Red Wing, including the Lindstrom family farm where her father worked and the nursing home.

They’re coming back for more. I’m doing an interview with the paper tomorrow afternoon. And an artist talk this week too. If you happen to be in Red Wing, drop by the St. James Hotel for the noontime Kiwanis on Thursday!

woodstock learning


I’m in the process of going through my negatives from my residency at Woodstock. Here are a couple of new images from the series so far.

© Hee Jin Kang 2008

I tried to capture a certain atmosphere that slowly revealed itself to me during the second week I was there.

During my final evaluation, I discussed the fact that working in a place that didn’t necessarily resonate with me personally was a challenge, particularly after working on projects that came from intensely personal motivations. But as I go through the imagery, I think I might have made an interesting group of photographs. It does make me want to go back to that area and shoot some more.

actias luna


© Hee Jin Kang 2008

Luna moths only live for about a week. We were visited by one last week in Woodstock – she rested on the screen door the entire day.