DON Sunpil (b. 1984) is an artist who dismantles the affection towards the object and background which are frequently appeared in the subculture. To the artist, represented by the figure, a so-called OTAKU culture is not simply for leisure or light amuse, but a fascinating social phenomenon and a clue to a shared aesthetic sense. DON brings out the subject like animation, which is asserted to be existing on the outside of Fine Art boundary, into a discourse within the art world then intersect each other. The artist not only maintains affection in one hand and strict aesthetic appreciation in the other for the cultural context, narrative, and the adoration towards the figures but also persistently explored the perfection and logical completeness of the figure, then unfolded them to the audience. DON sees the figure as a mass-produced product created by individuals who share the same aesthetic orientation and looks into the aspects of society and culture, the basis of which these specific individuals and communities were created. Furthermore, it is assumed that the interface between figures and fine art is ‘useless except for the appreciation’, and appreciation of artworks is compared to ‘Deokjil’. Under such a dry gaze, figures are reproduced with the limitation of the original color of the feeling of a unique scale. Figures that are monochromatic, or resizing the original scale became an object only for the appreciation, but it becomes satisfactory objects just in themselves.


DON Sunpil was born in Seoul, Korea, in 1983. He received his BFA in Printmaking at Hongik University and MFA in Fine Arts at Seoul National University of Science and Technology, Seoul, Korea. He held solo exhibitions at ARARIO GALLERY SEOUL (Seoul, Korea, 2023), YPC Space (Seoul, Korea, 2022), Little Art Sonje Center (Kunsthal Aarhus, Denmark, 2021), Art Sonje Center (Seoul, Korea, 2020), ARARIO MUSEUM in SPACE (Seoul, Korea, 2019), TasteHouse (Seoul, Korea, 2018), and Audio Visual Pavilion (Seoul, Korea, 2016). He also participated in the group exhibitions of SeMA Buk-Seoul Museum of Art (Seoul, Korea, 2022), Daerim Museum (Seoul, Korea, 2020), Danwon Art Museum (Ansan, Korea, 2019), ARARIO GALLERY RYSE HOTEL (Seoul, Korea, 2018), Grassi Museum (Leipzig, Germany, 2018), The Print Room (London, UK, 2017), Trading Post (Seoul, Korea, 2016), SangSangMadang (Seoul, Korea, 2015), and more. He worked as a resident artist at the SFAC Seoul Art Space Geumcheon in 2021, and the SeMA Nanji Residency in 2020. He has published Figure TEXT: Wonder Festival Report, Kitsutaiten (2019), Minmay Attack: Re-Re-Cast (2016), and Figure TEXT (2016). DON won the prize of 1st Seoul Arts Awards’ in visual art. He received the Grand Prize at the 15th Space International Print Biennale in 2009, garnering significant attention. In 2023, he won the Excellence Award in the Visual Art category at the inaugural Seoul Arts Awards. In 2024, he was selected to participate in Leeum's Art Spectrum 2024: Dream Screen. His works are included in the collections of institutions such as the Seoul Museum of Art and the Arario Museum.