* Date : 2014-11-25
Kim Ha-jun, the No. 1 sand artist in Korea
Kim Ha-jun showed raw talent in art when he was young, but he didn't dare dream of applying for art college due to financial troubles at home. So, instead, after graduating from high school, he spent day and night, working multiple part-time jobs, in a desperate attempt to escape from poverty. When the brilliant years of his 20s were nearly gone, an unexpected incident opened his eyes again to his childhood passion, art, and a few months later, he finally found out what campus life felt like.
The joy of pursuing his passion was only momentary though. He began having trouble, obtaining the art supplies he needed for his assignments and projects. So, he swallowed his pride, and picked up what had been thrown away into the trash cans by other students after they had left class. Eventually, he was nearly pushed over the edge, and he considered taking an extreme measure to avoid the pain and suffering. That was when he spotted the grains of sand being carried into a drain by rainwater at a construction site, and felt empathy toward it. He scooped up and brought the sand home and began expressing himself with it.
As the first sand artist in Korea, he had no one to learn from or to imitate, and this meant that he had to work extra hard to pioneer this field, There was even a time when he created more than 10,000 images over the course of 3 months, during which he did not set food outside his house.
Kim Ha-jun has performed more than 2,000 times and took part in the production of at least 500 sand animation. He is using sand animation and his creativity and talent to deliver hope to people in the blind spots of our society. Meet the first sand artist from Korea on this week's The INNERview.