Kwon, Yoon Duck is an illustrator, who understands best the potential of picture books. For Kwon, picture books are a window to see the world. Her work offers suggestions to the readers about how to view the world and for herself a way to a fulfilling life.

When she is working on her picture books, she is like a researcher. Once she comes up with a question to throw at the world, she begins to gather a variety of materials and starts her detailed observations and research. When her methodology is established, she focuses on experimenting and finally her original resolution is born through the picture book. This may be related to her scientific background. However, the reason behind her work being reinterpreted and receiving attention in various media including movies, animated films, and plays is because many people relate to and are persuaded by the questions she asks.

 

Her earnest position towards her surroundings in Korea, a country that suffered colonization, dictatorship and division into two nations led her to act socially as an artist. Her usage of Buddhist Art or traditional Korean art techniques and materials in her work is also part of her search to find identity as an artist. Her early works Manhee’s House and Tools and Work, are transitions from the artist’s macroscopic view, participating in the social art movement, to the microscopic view drawing daily life such as family and neighbors. Her later work Flower Granny covering the issues of the so-called “comfort women” is a return to a macroscopic perspective on life. Moving freely within her views, she shows that whether something is ordinary or has public value, everything should be respected as for the precious values they embody. Her picture books are a reflection of this worldview. 

 

Thus, her readers may always be a little nervous in front of her picture books as we are curious to see what new message she would like us to understand.

Education

  • 1983 Graduated Seoul Women’s University, BA in Food Science and Technology

  • 1985 Graduated from Hongik University, Department of Industrial Design, MA in Advertising Design, Thesis Study of copywriting driven Medicine advertisements

  • 1998 Studied Gongbi (Chinese Meticulous Painting technique) of ink and wash painting, Beijing China

  • 2005 Studied Buddhist painting under a Buddhist Monk of temple Bulsungsa at Anyang Gwanaksan.

     

Awards

  • 2010 3rd CJ Picture Book Illustrations Award- Flower Granny

  • 2010 1st Korean Book Awards - Flower Granny

  • 2013 ‘Korean Comfort Woman’ Merit Award from Minister of Gender Equality and Family

  • 2014 7th This Year’s Woman of Culture−Chung Kang Culture Award

 

Others

      Works appearing in public elementary school text books

  • 2009~2012 Grade 2-1 Korean writing Textbook: 'There Dangles a Spider' Text and Pictures

  • 2009~2012 Grade 1-2 Korean Reading Textbook: 'The Cat Copies Only Me' Text and Pictures

  • 2013~ Grade 1, 2 Integrated Korean Textbooks: 'The Cat Copies Only Me' Text and Pictures

  • 2013~ Grade 1, 2 Integrated Korean Textbook: 'Manhee’s House' Text and Pictures